Two child limit

Two child limit for Tax Credits, Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction

  • From 6 April 2017, Child Tax Credit (CTC) is limited to two children where a new child is born or joins a household on or after this date
  • If you already receive CTC for more than two children born before 6 April 2017, this will continue to be paid
There are exceptions to the two child limit and the decision on whether a third or subsequent child should be included in the tax credit award is made by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs.

The two child limit will also apply to the Housing Benefit rules in the following scenarios:
  • New claims made on or after 6 April 2017
  • Where a new child/youth joins an existing claim on or after that date
The rules limit the number of personal allowances paid for a child or youth to two per claim.
All children and youths in the household will still be taken into account when awarding premiums and deciding the bedroom requirement.
The changes apply to:
  • Housing Benefit claims for the working age and pensioners made on or after 6 April 2017
  • Council Tax Reduction claims for the working age made on or after 6 April 2017
Housing Benefit/Council Tax Reduction will follow any decision made by Tax Credits e.g. if three or more children are taken into account in the CTC assessment, then regardless of when an HB/CTRS claim is made, the same number of dependant allowances will be used in the HB/CTRS calculation.
To ensure we are using the correct personal allowance we may need to see your Tax Credit award letter.