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Working Tax Credit: disability element

Please note: You are no longer able to make a new claim for tax credits. In most cases, if you want to make a new claim, you will need to claim Universal Credit instead. You may also need to claim Universal Credit if you experience a change in circumstances.

If you tell us you are currently receiving tax credits we will work out how much you should be entitled to. So you can see how moving to Universal Credit could affect your entitlements we will also show what you might be entitled to under Universal Credit on the results page.

This guide remains for people who are still claiming tax credits.

Both Working Tax Credit (WTC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC) can include additional 'elements' due to disability, which can increase the amount of your award.

WTC - disabled worker element

This element is a significant one for disabled people. In addition to working at least 16 hours a week, you have to satisfy two other criteria - you must pass a ‘work disadvantage test’ and be in receipt of (or have recently received) a ‘qualifying benefit’.

It is the person who is working at least 16 hours who also has to meet the work disadvantage and qualifying benefit tests.

So if you are working and are not disabled, but have a disabled partner who is not working, you will not qualify for the disability element. You may however, qualify for the severe disability element. If you and you partner both meet the rules you can receive two disability elements.

To get the disability element of WTC included in your assessment, you must have a ‘physical or mental disability which puts [you] at a disadvantage in getting a job’. This is assessed by the work disadvantage test.

You must also meet the required benefit conditions. This is assessed by the qualifying benefit test.

How much is the element included in my Working Tax Credit?

If you satisfy the above rules for the Disability Element to be included in your Working Tax Credit an additional £3,685 (from April 2023) will be included in your maximum tax credit award.

HM Revenue and Customs may ask you to nominate a professional involved in your care who can confirm how your disability affects you - for example, an occupational therapist, community or district nurse or doctor.