Furlough: Some parents hit by coronavirus could now be able to claim extra £84 per month

Not only is the UK epidemic affecting health, but it’s hitting millions of people financially too. In response to the economic impact, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak announced the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme last month, with this package being among a number of emergency measures taken by the Government during the coronavirus crisis.

It means that employers can apply for a grant, covering 80 percent of a furloughed PAYE employee’s wages, up to £2,500 per month.

A different scheme for the self-employed was later announced.

Those eligible for the Self-employment Income Support Scheme are able to claim a taxable grant worth 80 percent of their trading profits, up to £2,500 per month for the next three months.

Meanwhile, others may be left needing to seek financial support by claiming Universal Credit.

READ MORE: Parents of newborns urged to claim Child Benefit amid coronavirus crisis

Child Benefit: Parent in pictures

Child Benefit: Some parents will usually face the High Income Child Benefit Charge (Image: GETTY)

For some, the coronavirus crisis will mean they face a reduction in their income, for a whole host of reasons.

During this difficult and unprecedented time, making ends meet will be a huge worry for many.

However, it may be that a temporary drop in earnings will mean usually higher-earning families become eligible to receive a certain payment.

This is something which chartered financial planner and Director of Public Policy at LEBC Group Kay Ingram has pointed out.

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Speaking to Express.co.uk, she explained that parents who see a “dip in their income” may find themselves no longer affected by the High Income Child Benefit Tax Charge.

Child Benefit increased by 1.7 percent in line with inflation earlier this month on April 6, as the new tax year got underway.

The increase is the first since April 2015, and came following the planned end to the government’s working-age benefits freeze.

Now, the weekly rates are £21.05 per week for an eldest or only child, and £13.95 per child per week for any additional children.

As such, for the first child, this works out at a payment of £84.20 over the course of four weeks, and £55.80 per child for any additional children.

Child Benefit guide

Child Benefit can only by claimed by one individual for a child (Image: GETTY)

“Those who have children under 16 or under 20, who are still in education, may become eligible for tax-free Child Benefit if their earnings or profits fall below £60,000 in the 2020/21 tax year,” Ms Ingram explained.

“Those with one income over £50,100 pay a progressive tax charge on Child Benefit, so that once income exceeds £60,000 it is taxed at 100 percent.

“As such, many high earning parents have waived their right to claim the benefit.

“If facing a dip in income they could claim Child Benefit to bridge some of the gap in their earnings.”

Should parents become eligible, Ms Ingram said they should consider applying for the payment using the form CH2 – something which can be found on the government website.

However, in cases where there are two parents or guardians responsible for the youngster(s), some consideration may need to go into who submits the claim.

This is because it could help to protect a non-earning or lower earning person’s state pension in the future.

“Where one parent does not expect to be working and paying National Insurance contributions in the future, they should apply for the benefit as this will automatically give them NI credits towards the state pension, which are lost if the earning parent claims,” Ms Ingram said.

Time is of the essence too, as the chartered financial planner pointed out. “A claim should be made now as the Benefit can only be backdated for three months.”

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