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After you've applied for Best Start Grant and Foods

Most of the time, you'll get a letter to let you know whether you're going to be paid Best Start Grant or Best Start Foods. We aim for this to be within 21 days of applying.

Sometimes there may be a delay in letting you know whether you'll get the payment if we've had high numbers of applications. We'll let you know that there's going to be a delay if this happens. You do not need to contact us.

If you've applied for both, you'll get one letter about Best Start Grant and another letter about Best Start Foods.

If you're going to get a Best Start Grant payment, it will be within 7 days of getting your Best Start Grant letter.

If you're getting Best Start Foods, you'll get your Best Start Foods card within 6 weeks of getting your Best Start Foods letter.

If you were told you need to send a copy of a certificate or legal order when you applied, you'll need to send this before Social Security Scotland can finish checking your form.

Uploading your documents to us online is the fastest way to get them to us.

If you cannot upload your documents, you can send us photocopies of your documents in the post. Before sending your photocopies, you should make sure you've written these details on the back of each photocopy:

  • your full name and date of birth
  • your National Insurance number, if you know it
  • the words 'Best Start Grant and Foods', so we know what you're applying for

You should post your photocopies to:

Best Start Grant and Best Start
PO Box 10300

You should check you've paid the right amount of postage before you send your photocopies.

Try to send photocopies, rather than originals, as it can take us up to two weeks to return any original documents you send. You can make photocopies of your documents at your local library.

Text message to confirm you've applied

If you asked for a text message to confirm Social Security Scotland have got your form, you'll get this text within a couple of hours of your form being received.

If your circumstances change

You must let Social Security Scotland know if your circumstances change. This could be if you:

  • move house outside of Scotland
  • are no longer looking after a child
  • either have a new partner living with you, or a partner has stopped living with you
  • stop getting a benefit

If you do not tell Social Security Scotland about your change of circumstance straight away, you may be breaking the law. Section 72 of the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018 says it's an offence not to tell them about a change of circumstance that they've asked you to.

Read the 'If your circumstances change' guide to find out more about:

  • the changes in circumstances you need to let Social Security Scotland know about
  • how to tell Social Security Scotland about the changes

Other changes you need to tell Social Security Scotland about

To make sure Social Security Scotland has the correct details, you also need to tell them if:

  • your name changes
  • your contact details change
  • you move house

You should also let them know if you've started looking after another child, to make sure you get all the payments you should. You may also need to update the provider of any other benefits you get.

If you need to get in touch

By phone

Freephone: 0800 182 2222 Monday to Friday, 9am to 3pm

By post

Social Security Scotland
PO Box 10303

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