A JOBLESS couple say they have been left scraping to survive after their tax credits were stopped without warning.

Tracey Forward, 28, of Liberty Way, Poole, has been without the support for her daughter, Tia, nine, for nine weeks and – despite calling a helpline daily – said she is now owed more than £700.

She said her payments were interrupted when she told HM Revenue and Customs that her partner, Craig Middleton, 30, was moving in with her.

The delays have meant that her landline phone, internet and TV services have all been cut off, said Tracey.

She added: “There’s no reason for the claim not to have gone through. I’ve got people phoning me every day asking for money that I don’t have.

“We made a couple’s Job Seekers’ Allowance claim and I told tax credits that he had moved in. Since then we’ve been waiting for payment.

“I’ve just been told to sit and wait.

“I’ve been told to go to the local tax office in Bournemouth to get emergency money, but that costs me money in petrol, which is a bit of a waste of time.

“We’ve been just about living on Job Seekers’ Allowance.”

Tracey said she had now been given an emergency payment from the tax office, but the claim itself was no further forward.

She has also received a response to a complaint letter she wrote saying she would receive a full reply after October 22.

This week, HMRC said it was sorry to hear about Tracey’s problems but could not comment on individual cases for confidentiality reasons.

The tax credit office would be contacting her, added a spokesman.