Treasury considering child benefit fines

Higher rate taxpayers could be penalised if they do not declare they have a partner who is receiving child benefit, according to the Treasury.

Higher rate taxpayers could be penalised if they do not declare they have a partner who is receiving child benefit, according to the Treasury.

Chancellor George Osborne recently announced plans to withdraw child benefit from couples where at least one partner pays higher rate tax from 2013. The plan is controversial as it means a couple with one higher rate taxpayer earning £44K would lose child benefit while a couple who both earn just under the £44K limit keep it.

There has been speculation, however, on how it can be enforced, given that mothers do not have to declare if they are receiving it.

 

The Government has denied this and, according to the BBC, has drawn up plans to write to all higher rate tax payers asking them whether they or their partner get child benefit. If they fail to reply or lie, they could face fines.

Commentators fear, however, that this could make the child benefit system more complex and intrusive.

 



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