HMRC guidance applies to tax credits and child benefit eligibility in respect of qualifying young people. Elective home education, including autonomous home education, is recognised as “approved” education as long as it is “continuing”.
Relevant HMRC guidance
CCM18030 – Child Benefit and Tax Credits: Definition of Full Time Education: “Main difference, if any, to Child Tax Credit (CTC) These definitions are the same for Child Tax Credit. See TCTM02230.”
CCM18035 – Child Benefit and Tax Credits: Definition of Approved Training: “Main difference, if any, to Child Tax Credit (CTC) This definition is the same as the definition for Child Tax Credit. See TCTM02230.”
Evidence of parental duty
It has come to our attention that HMRC is seeking evidence of home educated status from parents, who are the full time education providers but whose own formal notification/confirmation (i.e. their word) is deemed insufficient. This is something of a catch 22 situation since there is no requirement for elective home education to be approved or authorised by any outside agency.
Although Schoolhouse does not believe that home educators should be expected to provide third party proof of the fulfilment of what is primarily a parental duty, we may (when requested by members, as in the case of jury service citations), provide confirmation of your Schoolhouse membership, background information on elective home education and an outline of the legal responsibilities of home educating parents.
Should HMRC remain intransigent in relation to the requirement for evidence, we would recommend enlisting the help of your local MP.
Please also see Child benefit, tax credits, EMA and home education on the Home Education Forums website.