165,000 parents face fines for missing Child Benefit deadline

Mother and baby

Tens of thousands of parents face fines after missing the deadline to register their Child Benefit payments with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

165,000 parents who earn above the £50,000 threshold at which Child Benefit must be paid back to the tax authorities, are thought to have missed the deadline to register for self-assessment with HMRC.

But HMRC said 160,000 people did manage to register for self-assessment by the deadline of 5 October, including 29,000 registering over the weekend.

Since the beginning of this year, more than one million families have lost some or all of their Child Benefit - paid at a rate of £20.30 a week for the first child, with additional siblings getting £13.40 a week.

Households where one parent has an income of more than £60,000 are no longer entitled to the money at all, while those earning between £50,000 and £60,000 have seen a reduction in what they get.

The reduction works out at 1% of Child Benefit for every £100 of pre-tax income earned over £50,000.

But, confusingly, all of these families continue to receive the payments as normal and then have to pay back what they're not entitled to through self-assessment - which means they have to complete a tax return.

HMRC has not announced how much parents must pay in fines, but said any fine will be decided on a case-by-case basis.

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