Thousands of low-income families in Scotland are due to receive an extra £130 this winter to help with rising costs. The payment comes in the form of the Scottish Child Payment Bridging Payments and is awarded to households who are registered to receive free school meals.
The Bridging Payments bring together the Covid hardship payments and the Family Pandemic Payment into one, and it’s made four times a year.
This has so far seen families awarded with three £130 payments, distributed over Easter, summer, and Autumn.
However, Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, announced on Monday the payment due in December will double from £130 to £260.
It’s estimated around 145,000 families will benefit from the additional support this winter, receiving up to £650 per eligible child.
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- Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
- Universal Credit with a monthly earned income of not more than £660
- Universal Credit, with a single parent/carer working less than 16 hours per week with an annual earned income from employment of less than £17,005
- Universal Credit, with both parents/carers working less than 24 hours per week with an annual earned income from employment of less than £17,005.
People may also receive a payment if they’re experiencing financial hardship, such as those still waiting on their first Universal Credit payment, or those with an immigration status that means they can’t receive Government help.
Who will not be eligible?
A few factors can make a family ineligible to receive the funds.
The October Bridging Payments of £130 per child started at the end of September and should all be made by Monday, October 17.
The Scottish Government notes people are awarded payment based on information they already have of people in receipt of free school meals, so families who are entitled should apply for the meals through the local council if they haven’t automatically been awarded them.
It also notes all families currently receiving free school meals, who were awarded the benefit before July 1, 2022, must complete a new application for free school meals, to renew their entitlement and update their details.
To qualify for October’s Bridging Payment, the government website states applications for free school meals must be submitted by October 14, 2022.