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Am I eligible for the Scottish Child Payment?

An older man sits on a sofa, with a younger woman and her young daughter. Next to them is a young girl with curly hair and her dad. They are looking at laptop and there is a game of chess on the table.

What is the Scottish Child Payment?

Unique to Scotland, the Scottish Child Payment was originally launched in 2021 and those with children under the age of 6 could apply. This has since been extended to the age of 16, extending the Scottish Child Payment beyond 104,000 recipients to include a further 300,000 eligible children. This was a welcome boost to family finances across Scotland.

Read our simple guide to find out if your family could be better off, at a time when extra money in your pocket makes all the difference.

Who qualifies for Scottish Child Payment?

To qualify for Scottish Child Payment you must live in Scotland and either you or your partner must be responsible for a child/​children under the age of 16.

You or your partner must also receive, or have an application in for, one of the following benefits:

  • Child Tax Credit

  • Universal Credit

  • Income Support

  • Pension Credit

  • Working Tax Credit

  • Job Seeker’s Allowance (income based)

  • Employment Support Allowance (income related)

You can use our benefits calculator to check what benefits you are entitled to, including Scottish Child Payment.

How do I apply?

Applicants are encouraged to apply online. If that’s not possible, you can also apply by post or over the phone, by calling 0800 182 2222.

Text Relay Service: 18001 +0300 244 4000 (for the hard of hearing).
British Sign Language users: contactscotland-bsl.org

I receive Scottish Child Payment for my youngest child. Do I need to reapply for my older children?

No new application is required, but parents and carers will need to update their claim to include now-qualifying children. Older children can be added to an existing claim through the online Scottish Child Payment form.

I receive the Scottish Child Payment already. What do I need to do to get the increase?

You don’t need to do anything. If you already get the Scottish Child Payment then you will see an automatic increase to your award.

Is there a limit on how many children qualify?

There is no limit on the number of children who may be eligible for the Scottish Child Payment within a household. As long as you or your partner receive a qualifying benefit (see the list above), you can apply for any number of children under the age of 16.

Will the Scottish Child Payment entitle me to any other benefits?

Since 28 November 2022, Social Security Scotland has awarded the Best Start Grant Early Learning Payment and School Age Payment automatically to eligible families receiving Scottish Child Payment, without the need for separate applications.

Does working disqualify me from the Scottish Child Payment?

Many people who receive benefits, such as Universal Credit or Tax Credits, are in employment. As long as you receive one of the qualifying benefits, you will be eligible for the Scottish Child Payment on top of your current income. However, if your circumstances change then you will need to tell Social Security Scotland as well as the Deparment of Work and Pensions (DWP).

Will the Scottish Child Payment affect other benefits I receive?

No. The Scottish Child Payment does not negatively affect any tax payments or benefit awards you’re already receiving. The Scottish Child Payment is not included in any Universal Credit award calculations. You’ll receive it on top of your other existing benefits.

What about kinship carers?

If you’re caring for children within a family but are not their birth parent (sometimes known as a kinship carer), you can still qualify for Scottish Child Payment, as long as you meet the criteria above (under Who qualifies for Scottish Child Payment?’).

If you live in Scotland and are worried about your finances, check what local support CAP offers

CAP's services in Scotland
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Ruth, Co-Debt Centre Manager

We urgently need your support to reach every person in poverty.

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