Social security: benefit take-up strategy

This take-up strategy is the first to be published under the provision of the Social Security (Scotland) Act.

Annex C: BSG Pregnancy and Baby Payment Take-Up Estimate


To estimate the take-up rate of BSG Pregnancy and Baby payment we have used data from the National Records of Scotland (NRS), the Family Resources Survey (FRS) and Social Security Scotland's Management Information.

The total eligible population for BSG Pregnancy and Baby Payment consists of eligible first and subsequent births. The estimate of eligible births is informed by an assumption around the likelihood of families where the births occur being in receipt of one of the BSG qualifying benefits or where the parent is under 18. This assumption is consistent with the Scottish Fiscal Commission's forecasting model for BSG, which uses information from the FRS and DWP's Policy Simulation Model (PSM).

Since take-up rate is reported by specific months of birth (December to March), we have estimated the monthly breakdown of eligible births based on (unpublished) NRS data on births by year and month of occurrence.

The number of payments based on child's month of birth was sourced from an extract of data from Social Security Scotland's case management system.


The methodology for deriving the estimates of take-up of BSG Pregnancy and Baby payment is complex and has some limitations associated with it. Survey data are subject to sample variation and other errors associated with a sample survey.

The Family Resources Survey (FRS) is also known for underreporting of benefit receipt. The PSM, which has been used to estimate the proportion of eligible births, attempts to correct for this underreporting to a certain extent. As any microsimulation model, the PSM is based on a certain set of assumptions. The range of assumptions – the most fundamental being that past FRS data (suitably reweighted) give a good representation of the future – all carry associated uncertainty.[21]



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