Knowing what’s out there in terms of new mum benefits can feel a bit like looking for a lost dummy in the ball pool of your local soft play – overwhelming, frustrating and downright annoying!
But just as persevering to find said dummy can pay off when you spot it, so can finding out what you’re entitled to claim. Our cheats guide to maternity grants will take two mins to read tops (a heck of a lot less than finding that blasted dummy!).
What is a maternity grant?
It’s a one-off payment of £500 to help towards the cost of buying equipment for your baby, such as a pram or cot. It’s known as a Sure Start Maternity Grant.
How do I find out if I’m entitled to it?
You usually qualify for the grant if:
• you’ve no other children – unless you’re expecting a multiple birth (eg twins)
• you get certain benefits like income support, job seekers allowance etc...
What do I do to claim?
You must claim the grant within 11 weeks of expecting the baby or within three months after the birth. You don’t have to pay the grant back and it won’t affect your other benefits or tax credits.
How does it differ from maternity pay?
Currently, mums can claim statutory maternity pay [SMP] if they’ve worked with their employer for 26 weeks up to the 15th week before their expected due date. You are entitled to 39 weeks pay in total, six weeks at 90% of your salary and 33 weeks at approximately £135 per week.
Want to know how to make the most of your maternity pay and leave? We have some top tips!