Single parent and not working
The Maternity Alliance gets you up to date with the benefits you can claim
‘Single parent’, ‘lone parent’, or ‘one parent family’ are all terms which are used to describe you if you are bringing up a child or children on your own. You might be divorced, separated, widowed or never have married.
If you are unmarried but living with a partner you will be seen as a couple, not a single parent, and any benefits you can receive will take your partner’s income into account.
To claim many of the benefits described here you will have to fill out a claim form. You can pick up the claim forms at your local social security office or at some post offices. You should claim as soon as you become entitled to the benefit, or within three months at the latest, otherwise you may lose some of the benefit.
I am unemployed and pregnant with my first child. What can I claim?
If you are less than 29 weeks pregnant you should sign on as unemployed at the Jobcentre and claim Jobseeker’s Allowance – just as if you were not pregnant. You have to show that you are actively seeking work. If your pregnancy makes you incapable of work then you should claim Incapacity Benefit or Income Support instead.
Once you are 29 weeks pregnant you may be able to claim:
Maternity Allowance - if you have worked for at least 26 weeks in the 66 weeks before the week your baby is due, OR Incapacity Benefit or Income Support if you are not entitled to any maternity benefits Statutory Maternity Pay from your ex-employer, OR Income Support - this is the main benefit for single parents