Estimated CTB

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    I’m trying to establish the correct way of paying CTB for the full year, but cannot find any reference to it in the Regs. Can anyone point me in the right direction?

    Single claimant, on non-passported benefit has dependent child who will turn 19 years old and cease to receive child benefit on 15th October 2006.

    When we calculate the CTB for the year 2006/7 should we

    1: – Calculate CTB base upon the circumstances as at 01/04/06 and apply it to the claim for the full financial year ? (then revise the CTB in October 06 )


    2:- Calculate CTB for 01/04/06 to 15/10/06 on current circumstances and amend the claim to remove Child Benefit, Dependants Premium, family premium etc.. and calculate and award benefit for 16/10/06 – 31/03/07 based upon our best guess.

    I’m for option 2, as it will stop us knowingly overpaying CTB, but our Council Tax team want us to apply option one, they quoted a CTAX Reg. about not billing before changes had occurred .

    Which way is correct ?
    Which Regs. support that method of paying CTB ?



    Well we always base CTB on our “best guess” because we grant benefit for the financial year.

    I’d say you assess CTB incorporating the changes you know are coming in October. (Your option 1). I’m not sure what any CTAX reg has to do with it. This is a change to CTB not a billing issue.

    Whilst I accept that this doesn’t make it correct, I would have thought that tens of thousands of annual CTB awards get assessed in this way and to be honest I am not sure why you Ctax dept think their proposed alternative is more attractive from an admin point of view. How did this one case come to their attention?


    I dont think option 2 is correct. My view is that the correct way to do it for both CTB and CTAX is by option 1.

    Remember that by October his circumstances could have changed anyway, he may have started working of earning more or somthing.

    As long as you remember to supersede in October 06 you will be OK. Any excess benefit after the date of the supersession is always recoverable so you dont have to worry about overpayments.


    Hi Andy

    Thanks for your response – its more than just this one case (that was just an example) Its all cases where we have a dependant becoming 19 and so will have a claim split during the year

    The reason it has come about is historical, our old in house system didn’t allow future changes to benefit entitlement and so our Ctax & Welfare Rights office kicked up a stink when our new system did.

    I’m guessing it was from cases where claimant was on full benefit now and got a bill now for a change that may take place six months down the road.

    So I was looking for something in the CTB regs to back up assessing CTB for the full year, based upon the correct circumstances. I.E. some reg to define how to pay for the full year – logic dictates that you assess it as accurately as possible, was just wondering if there was anything else in black and white.



    I’m of the opinion that option 1 should apply. Otherwise the clt has a liability to make payments now for a change that doesn’t occur until later in the year. However, I appreciate that this may be a common sense answer rather than a legal one.


    I’d also go for Option 1 as the dep may still be eligible for CHB until she’s 20, and the corresponding HB/CTB regs may have appeared by then.

    Also they may still qualify for full CTB from October and your CTax section would have needlessly billed and gone through recovery procedures.

    Andy Thurman

    Can I extend this question to look at all cases where dealing with known changes in advance – pensioner non-dep easements, Tax credit changes (e.g. child becomes 1yr old, recovery of o/p completed)?

    This is DWP guidance re 26week easement:
    “The decision on the effect of the change should be made when the LA receives the information.

    That decision should reflect that the change will reduce HB/CTB, the amount of the reduction and the date the reduction will be implemented.

    Claimants should be notified of the decision and given full appeal rights at the same time the decision is made.”

    This suggests it needs to all be calculated in advance but further down the same bit of guidance it states:

    “When the 26 week point is reached, and assuming there have been no other relevant changes since the non-dependant moved in, the HB/CTB should be reduced. There will be no need to count this as a change of circumstances as the decision was made on 20 October 2003.” 😕

    My feeling on this, is that it would be incorrect to ignore a [u:28e05e1af8]known[/u:28e05e1af8] change in advance (as we would be stating an incorrect award & paying more CTB across than true entitlement) but also wrong to bill in advance.

    Looking at ctax billing, many LA’s operate 10 monthly instalments covering total annual amount to pay. Payments do not, therefore, tally exactly in any case to the weekly amount to pay. 😉

    My solution is: 💡 ❓
    1. Include change in assessment. HB award correct. CTB assessment correct but bill may be inappropriate.
    2. If change during year from full to partial CTB (e.g. working non-dep joins PCGC h/hold), memo to Council Tax section to defer billing until end of easement period.
    3. If ‘minor’ reduction to CTB, paragraph/sentence inserted into letter explaining that CTB for whole year calculated & bill sent for balance.

    I would, however, agree with Derrick in terms of the specific change of the original question. There are too many variables in this one & I would deal with b’day issues via diary dates.

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