I'm a benefits experts – the key dates that could change or stop your Universal Credit and other benefit payments

KEEPING on top of when your benefits are being paid is essential to help you budget your finances. 

Bank holidays could mean you get paid early and some benefits can stop entirely if you don’t renew them. 

We spoke to Squeeze Team expert and benefits specialist Anna Stevenson from Turn2Us to help you keep on top of key dates that could affect your Universal Credit and benefits. 

Bank holidays 

Thousands of people will have had benefits paid early this week due to the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee bank holiday falling on June 2 and 3d. 

Anna Stevenson said: “It is important to be aware of upcoming Bank Holidays as this could mean that your benefits might be paid early. 

“If you are due to have your benefit paid on the 2nd or 3rd June, it will be paid on 1st June instead. All other payment dates will stay the same as usual.”

It’s important to budget if you do get your benefits early as that cash may have to stretch a little further than usual. 

Don’t forget to make a note of whether the August bank holiday will affect your payments too. 

For a full list of benefits affected by bank holidays see our guide. 

Tax credits – renew or your payments could stop 

Millions need to review their working and child tax credits or risk missing out on thousands of pounds a year.

Tax credits must be renewed each year and the deadline for this is July 31. You can do this online, by post or phone.

Anna Stevenson said: “You should already have received your renewal pack if you receive tax credits, however if you haven’t, get in touch with HMRC to request one.”

 For more info see gov.uk/manage-your-tax-credits.

Child benefit check

Parents and carers whose 16-year-olds are continuing in full-time education need to let the Government know before August 31 or their child benefit payments will stop.

Last year this affected half a million families, according to HMRC. Visit gov.uk/child-benefit-16-19.

Payments for Scottish parents

If you are living in Scotland have a child born between 1 March 2017 and 28 Feb 2018, you might be able to get a School Age Payment of £267. Applications open 1 June 2022.

Families in Scotland on free school meals can also get a payment of £130 at the beginning of the summer holidays. 

Anna added: “If you are not already registered for free school meals for your children (even if their meals are provided for free because your children are in primary one to five) make sure you contact your council and apply as soon as possible.”

 Child turning three this summer

Parents who have a child turning three between April 1 2022 and August 31 2022 will be able to take up the offer of 30 hours of free childcare for working families. 

You need to apply before July 31. 

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Anna adds: “Councils in England also offer free holiday clubs for children getting free school meals. They usually fill their places by the end of June. 

“If you haven’t already, check on your council’s website if you could be getting free school meals so your kids can access the extra help.”

You may find it helpful to read our guide to the key dates you need to know that could affect your finances this year.

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