Money worries? Find out about the benefits available from Social Security Scotland

With rising living costs making life difficult for individuals and families across the country, local people are being reminded of the wide range of benefits that people can apply for from Social Security Scotland.


As part of its #MidlothianCares initiative, Midlothian Council is working with the national agency to help promote the support people can get if they are struggling with money matters.  Last autumn, the council set up a cross-party Cost of Living Taskforce to offer practical support and advice to local people struggling with their household finances, including food and heating costs.

Lessen the impact

“We’re working with partner agencies to do all we can to try and lessen the impact of this crisis on our local communities,” said Midlothian Council Leader, Councillor Kelly Parry. “People might not always be aware of the benefits they could be entitled to, and how easy it is to apply for financial help from Social Security Scotland. 

Range of benefits

“A wide range of benefits are available, including Best Start grants for people with young children, the Scottish Child Payment, carers’ grants, disability allowances and help with heating,” added Councillor Parry. “I would encourage anyone who thinks they might be eligible to find out more and get the support they need.”  

Social Security Scotland benefits 

  • Best Start Grant Pregnancy and Baby Payment – one off payment of up to £642.35 from 24 weeks in pregnancy up until a baby turns 6 months for families who get certain benefits
  • Best Start Grant Early Learning Payment – one off payment of £267.65 when a child is between two and three years and six months for families who get certain benefits
  • Best Start Grant School Age Payment – one off payment of £267.65 when a child would normally start primary one for families who get certain benefits
  • Best Start Foods – a pre-paid card from pregnancy up to when a child turns three for families on certain benefits to help buy healthy food
  • Carer’s Allowance Supplement – an automatic payment made twice a year to people who get Carer’s Allowance through the DWP on certain dates each year
  • Funeral Support Payment – money towards the costs of a funeral at a difficult time like this for people on certain benefits who are responsible for paying for a funeral
  • Job Start Payment – £267.65 for 16 to 24 year olds who have been on certain benefits for six months or more to help with the costs of starting a job
  • Young Carer Grant – an annual payment of £326.65 for people 16, 17 or 18 who care for people who get a disability benefit from the DWP for an average of 16 hours a week or more
  • Child Winter Heating Assistance - a £214.10 payment to help families of a child on the highest rate care component of Disability Living Allowance for Children to heat their homes
  • Scottish Child Payment - £100 every four weeks to help towards the costs of looking after each child under 16 for families who get certain benefits
  • Child Disability Payment - extra money to help with the costs of caring for a child with a disability or ill-health condition. It replaces Disability Living Allowance for children in Scotland that was previously delivered by the Department for Work and Pensions
  • Adult Disability Payment - extra money to help people who have a long-term illness or a disability that affects their everyday life. It replaces Personal Independence Payment people in Scotland previously delivered by the Department for Work and Pensions
  • Winter Heating Payment - a yearly payment of £50 to help people on low income benefits who might have extra heating needs during the winter

To apply

  • To find out more about these or to apply, visit
  • If you have a question or would like to apply over the phone, you can do this by calling 0800 182 2222

Need help?

Do you need help with your Social Security Scotland benefits application? Do you need any advice? Social Security Scotland has a trained advisor on hand between 10am and 1pm at these local libraries:

  • Dalkeith (2nd Tuesday of the month)
  • Newbattle (3rd Thursday of the month)
  • Loanhead (4th Thursday of the month)

Specially trained advisers will be available to tell you about the benefits available. If you can’t come to a drop-in session, you can book a face-to-face appointment.

Other sources of help

For details of other cost of living supports, including how to get help with money, fuel costs, food and clothes:

22 Feb 2023