Maternity and child benefits

You may be eligible for the following benefits, if you are having a baby, or have children.

This is a summary of the main criteria for information only. Any award will be subject to application and meeting the full eligibility criteria. If you would like more details or need advice, contact the welfare rights team.

This information is correct at the date of publishing on 1 December 2020, but may be subject to change.


Statutory Maternity Pay

When you take time off work to have a baby, you may be entitled to Statutory Maternity Pay. This is an employee benefit and is paid for up to 39 weeks.

Find out more about Statutory Maternity Pay


Maternity Allowance

Maternity Allowance is a benefit for women who are self employed or are working but not entitled to Statutory Maternity Pay.

Find out more about Maternity Allowance


Statutory Paternity Pay

When your wife, partner or civil partern gives birth or adopts a child, you may be entitled to Statutory Paternity Pay for two weeks.

Find out more about Statutory Paternity Pay


Council Tax Reduction

You may qualify for help to pay your Council Tax if you are on a low income, out of work or have little or no savings. The amount of Council Tax Reduction you receive depends on your circumstances.

Apply for Council Tax Reduction


Best Start Grant & Best Start Foods

You can get Best Start Grant and Best Start Foods:

  • if your child is the right age for a payment
  • whether you're in work or not, as long as you're on certain payments or benefits
  • as long as you're the parent of a child, or the main person looking after the child

Find out more about Pregnancy & Baby Payment, Early Learning Payment, School Age Payment and Best Start Foods


Child Winter Heating Assistance

This is a new benefit from the Scottish Government. It's a payment of £200 for children and young people up to the age of 18. To get the payment they must meet two criteria on at least one day in the third full week of September (called the "qualifying week"). On that day they must:

  • get the highest rate care component of Disability Living Allowance for children
  • be resident in Scotland

Find out more about Child Winter Heating Assistance


Scottish Child Payment

Scottish Child Payment helps towards the costs of supporting your family. It's a weekly payment of £10 that you can get for every child you look after who's under 6 years of age. You'll get the payment every 4 weeks if your application is successful.

Find out more about Scottish Child Payment


Child Benefit

This benefit is paid from birth. It is not means tested, unless you are a high earner.

Find out more about Child Benefit