Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for local authorities on pandemic support payments

Guidance to help local authorities deliver Pandemic Support Payments.


This guidance is to assist local authorities in delivering new Low Income Pandemic Payments announced as part of the 2021-22 Scottish Budget on 9 March 2021 and Scottish Child Payment Bridging Payments announced as part of the SNP 2021 Scottish Parliament election manifesto. These payments comprise:

  • a £130 Low Income Pandemic Payment (LIPP), to be paid to households by the end of October 2021 who are either: in receipt of Council Tax Reduction (CTR) or are within agreed groups exempt from Council Tax or who have no liability.
  • £520 to be paid in 2021 and  £650 in 2022 for each child in receipt of Free School Meals on the basis of low income. Payments are to be made quarterly aligning with the commencement of school holidays.

This guidance incorporates:

  • the previously announced Family Pandemic Payments and COVID Spring Hardship Payments, whch form part of the £520 to be paid as Scottish Child Payment Bridging Payments in 2021
  • the announcement made by the First Minister, on 10 October 2022, that the final Bridging Payment in December 2022 will be doubled to £260

Resource to facilitate delivery of these payments in 2021-22 will be paid via a redetermination of General Revenue Grant in the last two weeks of March 2022 based on actual costs incurred for payments made and a fixed contribution to administration costs. Similar arrangements will be observed in 2022-23. Notional allocations have been confirmed to local authorities through correspondence.

This guidance is intended to support delivery of the above payments, and provides:

  • background on the Pandemic Support Payments
  • guidance for the Scottish Child Payment Bridging Payments
  • guidance for the Low Income Pandemic Payment
  • reporting templates for completion and return to the Scottish Government
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