Scottish Child Payment

Our Tackling Child Poverty delivery plan set out a commitment to 'work towards introducing an income supplement within the lifetime of the delivery plan'. The Plan runs from 2018 to 2022.

We will introduce a new Scottish Child Payment for low-income families with children under six with the first payments made by Christmas 2020. We are prioritising this age group because we know from evidence that almost 60% of children in poverty live in a family with a child of six and under. 

The Payment will be delivered to all remaining eligible families with children under 16 by the end of 2022, with no cap on the number of children in families. 

The Scottish Child Payment will be administered by Social Security Scotland through an application-based process, and will be paid on a monthly basis.


  • payment level: £10 per week, per eligible child
  • eligibility: households with children and in receipt of a qualifying benefit (Universal Credit, Legacy Benefits and/or Pension Credit)
  • timescales: early delivery to eligible families with children under 6 by Christmas 2020. Full rollout to eligible families with children under 16 by the end of 2022

When the Scottish Child Payment was first announced on 26 June, we published:

  • a factsheet which sets out key details of this new benefit
  • a policy position paper that sets out the process of development of the Scottish Child Payment
  • an overview of initial policy development
  • the expected policy impacts it will have
  • analysis of options for the Income Supplement - a detailed analytical paper that shows the consideration given to a wider set of policy options

We then published a further updated position paper which sets out policy developments undertaken in relation to the Scottish Child Payment alongside continued work on service design and delivery.

This continued policy development and service design has supported the development of draft regulations. These will provide a legislative basis for the introduction of the payment. These draft regulations have been referred to the independent Scottish Commission on Social Security who will scrutinise them, and provide a final report and recommendations. This was part of the requirements of the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018, We will provide a response to this report, before laying the regulations in Scottish Parliament. This will probably be in early 2020.