MSP urges families to apply for new support payment
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Families in the north-east have been urged to apply for a new payment which will open next month.
The Scottish Child Payment has already received 56,000 applications from across Scotland after families were given early access due to expected demand.
Those who applied prior to February 15 will have their payments calculated from then.
Banffshire and Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson has urged parents to make their applications now to avoid losing out on money.
The new benefit will give eligible families on tax credits or certain benefits an extra £40 every four weeks for children under six.
Scotland is the only part of the UK where this additional payment for families with young children will be available.
The Scottish Fiscal Commission has forecast that the payment could support up to 194,000 children this financial year.
Mr Stevenson said: “It is clear many families have already put in their applications early and I would encourage those living in the north-east who would be eligible to also do so.
“The Scottish Child Payment is the most ambitious anti-poverty measure currently being undertaken in the UK but there are many more families who are entitled to this support and it is important they are able to get every penny that is due.
“We know how many families will have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic and the impact it has had on the economy.
“The form takes only 10 minutes to complete and the extra financial support could help ease financial pressure as a result of the national lockdown and following the Christmas period.”
For those who apply before Monday, February 15, their payment will be calculated from that date. For those who apply after, their payment will be calculated from the date they apply.
Social Security Scotland delivers a number of benefits for families. This includes Best Start Grant Pregnancy and Baby Payment, Early Learning Payment, School Age Payment and Best Start Foods.
Applications can be made for Scottish Child Payment and all of these using a single form.
Scottish Child Payment together with the three Best Start Grant payments and Best Start Foods could give families up to £5200 by the time their first child turns six.
People can apply by visiting mygov.scot/benefits or calling 0800 182 2222.
Scottish Child Payment is a new benefit and it is in addition to the UK wide Child Benefit.
To get advice on what benefits may be available to parents and carers, they can access free, confidential advice through the Money Talk Team. Visit Parentclub.scot to find out more.