CHILD TRUST FUND REGISTER IN FULL SWING
The new Child Trust Fund Register is gathering pace, with providers managing 3,962,000 Child Trust Funds (CTFs) now part of the innovative project.
The CTF Register plays an important role for providers who need to demonstrate their commitment to reuniting unclaimed assets and tracing gone away customers to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
This exciting collaboration between CTF providers, data management specialists The Tracing Group, and registered charity The Share Foundation (‘ShareFound’)enables young people to find their CTF more easily via the CTF Register
“The initial response to the CTF register has been fantastic, and we have been delighted to receive wide ranging positive feedback from both providers and young people,” said Gavin Oldham OBE, Chair of The Share Foundation. “Reuniting lost child trust funds with their rightful owner is a key part of our work, and I’m thrilled to have so many of the CTF providers engaged with the register so we can work together to bring more CTFs under the control of the young adults who need them.”
Since 2005, ShareFound has been working with the Government to support young people in care to access and make the most of their CTFs and Junior ISAs, acting as registered contact and providing financial education for young people, carers and local authorities, and a helpline for enquiries. ShareFound has extended its work to help disadvantaged young people (particularly those with one of the 1.7 million ‘revenue allocated’ CTFs compulsorily allocated to a provider when parents or carers did not engage in the account set up process following the birth of their child), to help them find their CTF account.
CTFs are long-term children’s saving accounts set up by the Government. They were designed to ensure children arrived at adulthood with a savings account and understood the importance of saving. CTFs were issued to almost all children born in the UK between 1 September 2002 and 2 January 2011. All money earned in the CTF is tax-free, and when the account holder turns 18, the mature CTF can either be cashed in or transferred to an adult ISA.
“The Child Trust Fund register is an excellent innovation for our industry and we had no hesitation in signing up,” added Karen Gillie, of NatWest Group, who provide CTFs to 759,000 young people. The CTF Register also plays an important role for providers who need to demonstrate their commitment to reuniting unclaimed assets and tracing gone away customers to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the regulator of financial services companies in the UK.
New providers are being added to the register all the time - the Tracing Group aim for full coverage. Online “drop in” information sessions will be held throughout May 2021 to target these remaining providers. Providers are encouraged to get in touch (via firstname.lastname@example.org) if they have not been contacted directly.
The new CTF Register brings together the expertise of The Tracing Group in tracing ‘gone away’ individuals and the insight of ShareFound, who have been supporting account administration and the financial education of children in care for the last 15 years. Young people aged 16 or over attempting to trace their CTF should check first with their parent(s)/guardian and, if they cannot help, visit https://findCTF.sharefound.org to register for the search. There is no cost to the young person for this service. In simple cases and where the provider has joined the CTF Register, the website will be able to return to quickly the details of the provider who is holding their fund.
For further information
The Tracing Group on 01603 937800 or visit www.thetracinggroup.co.uk
If further background information is required:
The Share Foundation has been running the Department for Education’s savings/investment schemes for looked after children and young people since 2012 (Junior ISAs since 2012 and CTFs since 2017), during which time it has benefited over 165,000 young people. Before that, it was making additional voluntary contributions to the CTFs of looked after children: as from 2nd October 2017, The Share Foundation took on responsibility for the CTF scheme from the Official Solicitor in addition to the Junior ISA scheme.
In its work for the DfE, one of its key priorities with the CTF has been the reconciliation of the CTF scheme for young people in care, following the discovery that less than 25% of accounts for these young people were recorded in the transfers received from the Official Solicitor. However, further analysis during 2018-2020 has shown that very large numbers of families and young people are unaware of their accounts, particularly among the most disadvantaged (those in receipt of Child Tax Credit). The Share Foundation is therefore undertaking a programme of general recovery for the scheme, part of which is the CTF Ambassadors initiative (www.CTFAmbassadors.org.uk).