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Money & Benefits


Money & Benefits


The process can be very complicated, and if you are under the age of 18, benefits may only be available in certain circumstances. The information below is to give you an idea of what might be available to you. In all cases, if you want to know more, or you think you might be eligible, you should contact a Youth Support Worker to discuss it further. You can also use the Entitled To benefits calculator to find out what you could be entitled to. Further information is available at

What benefits are available for me?

Child Benefit

Your parents can usually claim child benefit if you are attending full time education or training up to your 20th birthday

Child Benefit Extension

If you are 16 or 17 years old and leave full time education or training your parents may be able to claim child benefit extension – you will need to register with your local youth centre and contact the Child Benefit Agency

Child Tax Credits may also be available to to parents – Contact the Child Tax Credits Agency. You can't claim Child Tax Credits and Universal Credit at the same time.

Healthy Start food vouchers

For pregnant women and families on certain benefits with children under four. Also all pregnant women under 18.

Speak to your midwife, health visitor or GP or call Healthy Start on 0345 607 6823

Sure Start Maternity Grant

A one off payment of £500 for pregnant women or new mums on certain benefits expecting first child or a multiple birth (e.g. twins) and are currently on certain benefits

Surestart Maternity Helpline on 03456036967

Free Prescriptions and NHS Dental Treatment

For pregnant women and new mums for the first 12 months.

Get maternity exemption certificate from GP or midwife.

Some young people may be able to access these if on certain benefits. 

See for full details of availability



Job Seekers Allowance (JSA)

16 to 17 years olds

JSA isn’t usually paid to 16 or 17 year olds except in certain circumstances. 

JSA severe hardship may be paid to young people in certain and difficult circumstances. Speak to your Youth Support Worker for more information


If you are unemployed or working less that 16 hours per week, you may be able to claim JSA

You may be able to get income support if you are aged 16 or 17, in education or training or you have recently left either of these and are not living at home.

Universal Credit

you may be able to claim Universal Credit if you are on a low income or out of work and you may be able to apply for New Style & Contribution Based JSA – see for more details

Disability Living Allowance for children (DLA)

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children may help with the extra costs of looking after a child who: 

  • is under 16
  • has difficulties walking or needs more looking after than a young person of the same age who doesn’t have a disability

They will need to meet all the eligibility requirements.

The DLA rate depends on the level of help the child needs. The child may need an assessment to work out what help they need.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) helps with some of the extra costs caused by long-term ill-health or a disability if you’re aged 16-64.

The rate depends on how your condition affects you, not the condition itself.

You’ll need an assessment to work out the level of help you get. Your award will be regularly reassessed to make sure you’re getting the right support.

Carer’s Allowance

Carer’s Allowance is there to help you look after someone with substantial caring needs.

You don’t have to be related to, or live with, the person you care for (however they must be claiming certain benefits).

You must be 16 or over and spend at least 35 hours a week caring for them (other conditions apply).

Carer’s Allowance is taxable (subject to income). It can also affect your other benefits.

Employment Support Allowance (ESA)

If you are unable to work due to illness you may be able to claim ESA

You must go to a Work Capability Assessment while your ESA claim is being assessed. This is to see to what extent your illness or disability affects your ability to work.

How much ESA you get depends on your circumstances and where you are in the assessment process

Contact JobCentre Plus directly on 0800 0556688

Need advice, support or information on this topic?

You can always talk to a Youth Support Worker: