Scottish benefits

Some benefits are already different in Scotland and some are transferring from the UK to Scotland. The Scottish Government sets the rules for these benefits and a new agency called Social Security Scotland has been created to deliver these benefits. There are still many benefits which are UK-wide and which people in Scotland are able to claim.

Benefits in the Scottish system

You can already get council tax reduction, to help with council tax bills and discretionary housing payments for people getting some housing benefit or universal credit to help with rent, who are still struggling to pay the rent. The Scottish welfare fund is for one-off expenses in a crisis or to help people remain in the community.

The Scottish Government sets the rules for council tax reduction, discretionary housing payments and Scottish welfare fund and local authorities deliver them.

Best start grant is to help with the cost of having a baby or starting to care for a young baby and with extra costs as your child reaches nursery and then school age. It replaces the Sure Start maternity grant in Scotland. Pregnancy and baby payment, which is part of best start grant, is available to claim from 10 December 2018.

Carer’s allowance supplement is an additional payment for people who are getting carer’s allowance. A young carer grant will support some young people caring for a disabled person and carer’s assistance will replace carer’s allowance in Scotland.

Disability assistance will replace disability living allowance, personal independence payment and attendance allowance and employment-injury assistance will replace industrial injuries disablement benefit in Scotland.

Funeral support payment will help people on a low income with the costs of a funeral and will replace the social fund funeral expenses payment in Scotland.

Cold-spell heating assistance will help people on a low income in a spell of cold weather and will replace the social fund cold weather payment in Scotland. Winter heating assistance will help people over pension age with fuel costs and will replace the winter fuel payment in Scotland.

Special universal credit rules in Scotland

Although universal credit is still a UK-wide benefit, people in Scotland can opt to have their payments made more frequently and, if they get help with rent, can have that part of their universal credit paid direct to the landlord. The Scottish Government plans to change the amount of help you get with your rent if you are affected by the bedroom tax. Read about the rules on universal credit in Scotland.

Benefits which stay in the UK system
  • Bereavement benefits
  • Child benefit
  • Employment and support allowance
  • Guardian’s allowance
  • Housing benefit
  • Income support
  • Jobseeker’s allowance
  • Maternity allowance
  • Pension credit
  • State pension
  • Statutory payments such as statutory sick pay and statutory maternity pay
  • Tax credits
  • Universal credit
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