Scottish parents now entitled to cash grant to support pre-school kids - here's how to apply
Low income parents in Scotland are now entitled to a cash grant to support their child up until they reach school age.
The Best Start Grant includes three one-off cash payments to help support low income families at key stages in a child's life.
The payments are part of the Scottish Government's new package to support families in receipt of eligible benefits, including Universal Credit, Income Support, Housing Benefit and tax credits.
The three one-off cash payments are:
Pregnancy and baby payment
This can be applied for from 24 weeks pregnant up until the day your baby is six months old, or up to one year old if you have taken over looking after a child.
If it is your first child you will receive a payment of £600, and for any you have after this you will be entitled to £300 per child.
Early learning payment
Parents can apply for this £250 payment from their child's second birthday up until they are three and a half years old.
School age payment
This payment can be applied for in the year your child is due to be starting school and can be used to cover the cost of uniforms, shoes and books.
How to apply
To be eligible for the grant, applicants must meet the qualifying criteria.
Anyone who is aged 18 or over can apply, whether you are in work or not, but you must be receiving one of the following:
- Child Tax Credit
- Universal Credit
- Income Support
- Pension Credit
- Working Tax Credit
- Housing Benefit
- Income-based Jobseekers Allowance (JSA), not 'contribution based' JSA
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), not 'contribution based' ESA
Your income, or the amount you receive any of these benefits or payments, does not matter - you simply need to be receiving at least one of them.
If you are not receiving any of these benefits or payments, but you have applied for one, you can still apply for the Best Start Grant.
Applications for the grant can be made online at mygov.scot.