Money, money, money

BCC (Before Credit Crunch) I rarely used to do more than glance at the Tax Credits notifications that landed on our doormat once a year. As long as our circumstances hadn't changed, that was that, and those terrible TV adverts with the annoying theme tune and the incredibly patronising voiceover made me want to switch off completely.

But the recession has made us much more vigilant – about bills, official looking letters, and watching where the money goes in general. So last week I decided to read our notification carefully, and was shocked to discover that they had us down as claiming £20,000 in benefits! Well, news to me, and the bank.

I rang the helpline immediately. 'Terribly sorry, madam,' the advisor told me cheerfully. 'Human error.' No kidding.

My advice is if you have a Tax Credits notification to check it thoroughly. If there aren't any changes you don't need to do anything – but if there are, you have until Friday to let them know.

written by Liz Jarvis