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Your change in circumstances

What you need to do

You need to tell Social Security Scotland about a change in your circumstances, or a change in your partner's circumstances, if you:

Changes you need to let Social Security Scotland know about

You need to let Social Security Scotland know if your circumstances change so they can make sure you get all the payments you should. If your circumstances change and you do not tell Social Security Scotland, you may get a payment by mistake. If this happens, you may be asked to pay the money back.

If you get Scottish Child Payment, you must tell Social Security Scotland if your circumstances change. This could be if:

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

Changes

Name

This could be following a marriage or civil partnership, or if you legally changed your name.

If you've not told the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) that your name has changed, you'll need to send Social Security Scotland documents confirming the change.

Address

This could be if:

  • you've moved house
  • you still live at the same address but want Social Security Scotland to send letters to a different address

Social Security Scotland will also update the address of a partner, if you have one, or the address of any children you look after.

If you've not told the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) that your address has changed, you'll need to send Social Security Scotland documents confirming the change.

Call Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222 if you're moving to an address outside the UK.

Child responsibility

You must tell Social Security Scotland if you're looking after fewer children, or more children. This could be if:

  • you're no longer looking after a child, for example, due to the end of a relationship or a divorce
  • you or your partner have given birth, or you've adopted

If you're already getting Best Start Foods or Scottish Child Payment then Social Security Scotland will check if you can get it for any additional children you're now looking after.

If you're looking after a child born in the last 6 months

You might be able to get Best Start Grant Pregnancy and Baby Payment for this child.

If you've only just started looking after a child then this goes up to the last 12 months. This could be if you're the kinship carer for the child.

Social Security Scotland cannot check if you can get Best Start Grant Pregnancy and Baby Payment using the change in circumstances form. You can still apply for this payment as well as the other parts of Best Start Grant, Scottish Child Payment and Best Start Foods. Go to the joint application form to do this.

Relationship

You should tell Social Security Scotland if your relationship status has changed.

This could be if:

  • you're now living with your partner
  • you're no longer living with a partner

Death of a child or partner

Call Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222 if your child or partner has died. A trained adviser will help you complete the change in circumstances form at your own pace.

Benefits or payments

You need to tell Social Security Scotland if you or your partner have started or stopped getting any of the following benefits:

  • Universal Credit
  • Income Support
  • Pension Credit
  • income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit

Best Start Foods

Some of the benefits you need to get for Best Start Foods have an income limit.

The benefits that have an income limit are:

  • Universal Credit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit
  • Housing Benefit

Call Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222 if you get Best Start Foods and your income is above the limits for these benefits.

Universal Credit

If you or your partner have a job, your joint income from working must not be above £610 a month. This is after tax and National Insurance. Universal Credit payments are not counted as part of this.

Child Tax Credit

If you're not getting Working Tax Credit, you and your partner's joint income from working must not be more than £16,190 a year.

Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit

Your income from working should not be above £7,320 a year.

Housing Benefit

You and your partner's joint income from working should not be more than £311 a week.

Pregnancy

If you get Best Start Foods, you should tell Social Security Scotland if you or your partner are pregnant. Social Security Scotland will check if you can also get Best Start Foods for this child.

You should tell Social Security Scotland if you're currently getting Best Start Foods for a pregnancy and have now given birth.

If you or your partner are 24-weeks pregnant

You might be able to get Best Start Grant Pregnancy and Baby Payment for this child, but Social Security Scotland cannot check using the change in circumstances form.

You can still apply for this payment as well as Scottish Child Payment and Best Start Foods. Go to the joint application form to do this.

If you're no longer pregnant

Call Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222, if you're no longer pregnant and a trained adviser can help you complete the change in circumstances form at your own pace.

Payment details

If you're getting Best Start Foods, Scottish Child Payment, or any part of Best Start Grant, you can tell Social Security Scotland if you'd like to change the details of where you get your payments.

These changes could be details of your:

  • bank account
  • building society
  • credit union

Call Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222 to report a change in your bank details.

For your security, you cannot send any change in bank details using the online form.

Update your mobile number, email address or how Social Security Scotland contact you

This could be:

  • whether you'd like to get text messages or emails
  • the way you want Social Security Scotland to contact you, including by phone, British Sign Language video call or letter
  • whether you'd like to get letters in other formats including braille, easy read, large print, or audio file
  • whether you'd like to get calls and letters in a language other than English

After you've told Social Security Scotland

You'll get a letter to let you know if your changes will affect your payments for Scottish Child Payment or Best Start Foods. You'll usually get this within 30 days after Social Security Scotland have received your changes.

Who else you need to tell

Before you tell Social Security Scotland about any changes, you will need to tell:

  • the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)
  • HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)
  • the local council

This is because Social Security Scotland will need to check the information you give them so they can make sure the details are correct.

If you've not told the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) about your changes, you may need to send Social Security Scotland documents confirming the change.

Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)

You should contact the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) if you get any of these benefits:

  • Universal Credit
  • Income Support
  • Pension Credit
  • income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)

You should contact HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) If you get any of these benefits:

  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit

Local council

You should contact your local council if you get Housing Benefit.

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