Benefits for all mothers
All mothers qualify for some benefits - Working Families fill you in
Child Benefit Free Prescriptions Free dental treatment
What is it?
A tax-free benefit to help parents with the cost of caring for their children. It is payable for each child from birth until at least age 16.
Who gets it?
Every mother - it does not depend on your income or National Insurance contributions, but you must generally have been living in the United Kingdom for at least six months.
How much is it?
£20.00 a week for your first child. For other children you get £13.20 a week per child.
How do I claim?
You may get a claim pack inside the Bounty Pack, which most new mothers are given in hospital. You can also get a claim pack from your social security office or post office, or claim online at www.hmrc.gov.uk. Fill in the forms and send them with the baby's birth certificate to the Child Benefit Centre (you will be given a pre-paid addressed envelope). You will be given the birth certificate free when you register the birth. It will be returned to you.
Child Benefit can be paid directly into your bank account or by a book of orders which you cash at the post office. It is usually paid every four weeks in arrears, but single parents and families on low incomes can choose to be paid weekly.
You should start to claim Child Benefit within three months of your baby's birth, otherwise you will lose some of the benefit.
Child Benefit can help to protect your state retirement pension if you stay at home to look after your child. For every complete year that you get Child Benefit but don't pay enough National Insurance to count towards the basic pension, you automatically get 'Home Responsibilities Protection' which means that the year will be credited as counting towards your pension.
Who gets them?
NHS prescriptions are free while you are pregnant and for 12 months after you have given birth. Your child also gets free prescriptions until age 16. To claim if you are pregnant, ask your doctor or midwife for form FW8 and send it to your Health Authority (in Scotland, the Health Board). You will be sent an exemption certificate which lasts until a year after your due date.
How do I claim?
To claim after your baby is born (if you didn't claim when you were pregnant) fill in form A in leaflet P11 NHS Prescriptions which you can get from your doctor or social security office.
Free Dental Treatment
Who gets it and how do I claim?
You can get free NHS dental care if you are pregnant or you have given birth within the last 12 months. You claim by ticking a box on a form provided by the dentist or showing your Exemption Certificate (see above).
For more information about benefits see the Working Families website.