Thursday 2 July 2020

Putting money back in the pockets of young people with Child Trust Funds!

Everyone born in the UK between 1st September 2002 and 2nd January 2011 was given a Child Trust Fund through the government. New parents were handed a voucher of up to £250 to start off the fund and up to £500 for parents on a low income. They were a tax free saving accounts set up to help make sure that every child that qualifies arrives at adulthood with a savings account!

Parents, family, friends and the children themselves could save money and add up to £9,000 a year. The year starts on the child’s birthday and ends the day before their next birthday.

The choice of account and control of that account belongs to a parent or guardian until the child turns 16 when they can choose to manage their own account. When the child is 18 they can take the money out of the account and do whatever they please with it.

My girls both received their money and we put them in savings accounts and the money has been sat in those accounts since we received the vouchers. To be honest we forgot about them. We have saved for them both in separate savings accounts linked to my bank account. We did at one point lose track of the Child Trust Funds when we moved house, for a long time I couldn't even remember which bank/savings company we had put Ellie's with.

There are an estimated one million lost Child Trust Funds, according to charity the Share Foundation. Often this happens when a family moves home and forgets to update their CTF provider with their new address. It is easily done.

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has a handy tool where you can find out which provider the Child Trust Fund is with which I used to find my girls accounts.

You need to log in using a Government Gateway ID which you should have if you've filled in a tax return or have renewed your driving licence online. If you don't have one they are easy to create. You simply fill in your details, including address and phone number and your child's details, including name and date of birth and you should hear from HMRC within 15 days telling you which provider holds your child's account. You then contact your Child Trust Fund provider to reclaim the account.

Becky turns 18 in a few months and she will be one of the first young adults to be able to take advantage of the money out the trust fund. She is planning on taking her money and spending it on driving lessons. Well as soon as the lock down is over and driving instructors can get back to work.

Does your child have a Child Trust Fund? Do you know where their money is saved?

1 comment :

  1. That's really useful to know. When we moved house it took me about 2 years to change the address on my kids funds, but I had managed to keep the details.