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First published:
24/11/2021

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Scottish Child Disability Payment

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The Scottish Child Disability Payment is a new benefit offered by Social Security Scotland to support families of children with a disability or long-term physical or mental health condition.

Child Disability Payment will be available across all of Scotland from 22nd November 2021. Child Disability Payment will replace Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for Children.

If you already claim DLA for children, please read the ‘If you currently claim DLA for children’ section for more information about how this change will affect you.

You can apply for Scottish Child Disability Payment if either of the following applies to you:

  • You have parental rights and responsibilities for a child under 16 with mental or physical disabilities. If you’re not sure if this applies to you, click here to read the Scottish Government Guidance.
  • You look after a child who you do not have parental rights and responsibilities for but who does not live with a parent.

How much can I claim?

The amount you can claim from Scottish Child Payment will depend on how much care the child you are looking after requires. This could mean support with physical care, such as moving around, and support for mental, emotional, or learning challenges.

There are two main components to Scottish Child Disability Payments:

  • The Care component is based on how much attention the child you look after needs. This component is paid at three different rates:
    • The Highest weekly rate is paid at £89.60. You will be paid this rate if the child you look after:
    • They need frequent attention from someone during the day, and prolonged or repeated attention at night, due to a physical or mental disability
    • They need continual supervision during the day and another person to be awake for a prolonged period or at frequent intervals at night, to avoid substantial danger to themselves or others
    • They are terminally ill.
  • The Medium weekly rate is paid at £60.00. You will be paid this rate if any of the following applies to the child you look after:
    • They need frequent attention from someone during the day or repeated attention at night due to a physical or mental disability
    • Needs continual daily supervision or regular nightly supervision to avoid substantial danger to themselves or others
  • The Lowest weekly rate is paid at £23.70. You will be paid this rate if any of the following applies to the child you look after:
    • They need from someone for a significant part of the day due to a physical or mental disability
    • is 16 or older and, due to a mental or physical disability, unable to prepare themselves a cooked meal
  • The Mobility component is based on how much support the child you look after needs to move around outdoors. This component cannot be claimed for a child under the age of 3. This component is paid at two different rates:
    • The Higher weekly rate is paid at £62.55. You will be paid this rate if any of the following applies to the child you look after:
      • They cannot walk outdoors due to their disability
      • They have a severe visual disability or are blind and deaf
      • They have a severe mental health disability
      • They have severe behavioural difficulties due to a severe mental health disability and need supervision both during the day and at night
      • Their health would be harmed if they were to walk
      • They are terminally ill.
    • The Lower weekly rate is paid at £23.70. You will be paid this rate if both of the following applies to the child you look after:
      • They are five years old or older
      • They can walk (with or without equipment), but they need supervision from someone else to move around outdoors.

Child Disability Payments are not means-tested, so the amount of money you earn will not affect how much you receive from the Child Disability Payment. You will also not pay any tax on any Child Disability Payment that you claim.

Applying for Scottish Child Disability Payment

You can apply for Child Disability Payment on the Scottish Government website in two different ways:

  • Online: click here to go to the application page.
  • By phone and paper: call 0800 182 2222 (line open 8 am to 6 pm, Mon - Fri). You can then either apply over the phone or ask to have a paper form sent to you.


If you would like support with your application, you can ask Social Security Scotland to meet with your Local Delivery service. This can be over the phone, online, or face-to-face.

The Local Delivery team can help go through the application with you and answer any questions you have.

For more information about this, visit the MyGov page here.

The application for Scottish Child Payment is in two parts. Once you have completed one part, you will have six weeks to complete the other part. If this is not enough time, Social Security Scotland can help. You can contact them here.

What information will I need to give?

You will be asked to provide information about the child you are looking after. This will include:

  • Personal details, such as their name, address and age.
  • The conditions and symptoms they are experiencing*.
  • What equipment they use, and what medication they take, if any.
  • What kind of support do they require, both during the day and at night.
  • How well they can move around outside.

*If the child you look after has not yet been diagnosed with a physical or mental disability, you can still apply for Child Disability Payment. When you apply, you can tell Social Security Scotland about their symptoms and how it affects their life.

You will also be asked for information about yourself, including:

  • Personal details, such as your name, National Insurance number and address
  • Your relationship with the child
  • The support you provide for the child
  • How you would prefer to be contacted if Social Security Scotland needs more information about your application.

What happens after I apply?

Once you’ve applied, Social Security Scotland will decide within 42 working days of your application being completed. This is shortened to 7 days for children with a terminal illness. In the meantime, they may contact you for more information about your application.

Social Security Scotland will then let you know whether you have been successful in applying for Child Disability Payment, and if you are successful, how much you will be paid weekly.

I disagree with Social Security Scotland’s decision. What can I do?

If your application was not successful, and you think it should have been, or if you were successful but think the amount you will be paid is wrong, you can ask Social Security Scotland to reconsider. For more information on how to do this, click here.

If you currently claim DLA for children

Do I need to reapply for Child Disability Payment?

If you already claim Disability Allowance for children (DLA), you do not need to apply separately for Child Disability Payment. You’ll continue to receive your DLA payments until Autumn 2021 when you will be automatically transferred to Child Disability Payment. You’ll be contacted when this happens, and you won’t need to be reassessed.

Will the amount I receive change when I’m transferred to Child Disability Payment?

No - when you are transferred, you will receive the same weekly amount as you did when you received DLA for children. You will not be automatically reassessed.

Other available support for parents and guardians

What other benefits could I apply for?

If you are a parent or guardian of young children, you might also be eligible for the following benefits:

  • Best Start Foods.
  • Child benefit.
  • Best Start Grants.
  • School clothing grant.

What mental health support is available for parents and guardians?

If you’re a parent or guardian and are experiencing challenges with your mental health, there is support for you. If you need advice or someone to talk to, these links may help you find the support you need:

If you are experiencing challenges with your money and mental health, click here to find more support on our website.

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