Best Start Grants and Baby Payments

Pregnancy and Baby Payment

The Pregnancy and Baby Payment is part of Best Start Grant, a package of three payments that will give extra money to low income families during the early years of a child’s life. The two other payments will be available by Summer 2019.

For information on Best Start Grant and the Pregnancy and Baby Payment families can visit or call the Agency on 0800 182 2222.

What is happening and when

10 December - Pregnancy and Baby Payment is open for applications via the freephone helpline on 0800 182 2222, by post or online at

Before Christmas - First Pregnancy and Baby Payments are made to people who have provided a complete application and where we do not require further information or evidence.

Helping children get a fairer start

The Best Start Grant is a package of three payments, delivered by Social Security Scotland, that will give extra money to lower-income families during the early years of a child’s life. The three payments include the Pregnancy and Baby Payment, which will be open for applications on 10 December 2018.

The Pregnancy and Baby Payment will help with expenses in pregnancy or the expenses of having a baby. This replaces the DWP’s Sure Start Maternity Grant and will put more money into the pockets of families on low incomes – paying £600 on the birth of a first child and £300 for each sibling born thereafter.

Two additional payments of £250 will help with the costs of early learning and school preparation costs and will be open for applications by summer 2019.

To be eligible for the Pregnancy and Baby Payment, the family must live in Scotland and be in receipt of a qualifying benefit from the list below:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Pension Credit
  • Universal Credit
  • Housing Benefit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit

Parents are eligible from the 24th week of pregnancy and applications can be made up until the child is 6 months old.

If the expectant mother is under 18 or 18/19 and still dependant on their parents and in full time education or training – they do not need to be in receipt of a qualifying benefit.

Social Security Scotland

Social Security Scotland is the new service that has been created by the Scottish Government to deliver a number of benefits. These benefits will transfer from the UK Government to the Scottish Government in stages over the next four years. At the end of the transfer process they will be delivering benefits to provide additional support for people on low incomes, disabled people, carers, young people entering the workplace and to help people heat their homes.

Social Security Scotland’s head office is in Dundee with another major base in Glasgow. Once fully operational, will also provide a local presence across Scotland. They want their clients to be able to access our services as close to their homes as possibleand in a way that suits them. Social Security Scotland will put dignity, fairness and respect at the heart of everything they do. The Council want to help claimants in our area to access the support that they are entitled to receive by signposting people to the Social Security Agency in Scotland.

The Pregnancy and Baby Payment will be disregarded for UK benefit and tax credit assessments.

If you don’t agree with a decision after your claim has been decided

The Scottish Social Security agency has a standard process for claimants who do not agree with a decision on their claim. If you want to challenge the decision they have made on your claim with them directly you can do so here on the website:

If you wish to make an appeal to the Social Security Chamber of the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland click here