News added on 23.08.2017

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HMRC offers payment to parents for childcare website glitches

If you've been unable to access the new Tax-Free Childcare website for technical reasons, you should be able to claim compensation from HMRC. How do you make a claim?

New Tax-Free Childcare website. Under the Tax-Free Childcare scheme, parents in England can apply via the Childcare Service website to open a special account to save for childcare costs. For every 80p deposited, HMRC adds 20p, up to a value of £2,000 per child, per year. The Childcare Service site, run by HMRC, went live on 28 April 2017 but has been beset with technical problems since with many parents struggling to log on or access parts of the site. This has resulted in parents not being able to access their funds so having to pay twice or being fined by their childcare provider for late payment.

Compensation claim. While it’s billed as a compensation scheme, it’s essentially a redress scheme. If you have lost out as a result of the site’s glitches, then you are entitled to claim for any missed top-up payments or financial losses such as nursery late payment fees or bank charges. Claims can only be made by completing a Childcare Service claim form which will need to be printed out and posted to the Childcare Service, HMRC, BX9 1GR.

Tip 1. Make sure to include copies of any evidence relating to the claim.

Tip 2. There’s no reason you can’t include phone costs providing you have a phone bill showing the time spent speaking to HMRC to try to sort out the issues.

Compensation is applied for by post using the Childcare Service claim form. You are entitled to claim for any missed top-up payments or financial losses such as nursery late payment fees.

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