Home Advice & informationChildren and Young People A Guide to Benefits if you are under 16 and having a baby

A Guide to Benefits if you are under 16 and having a baby

If you are under 16, there are only a few benefits you can claim in your own right.

Benefits whilst you are pregnant

You will usually be able to get Healthy Start vouchers towards the cost of milk, fruit or vegetables whilst you are pregnant

Benefits when your baby is born

You can usually claim when your baby is born, but there may be a choice about whether you, or an adult you live with, claims Child Benefit for your baby. Get advice if you are not sure what to do.

If you live with your parents or someone else who looks after you, they may be able to claim Child Tax Credit for you and your baby if they have an existing Tax Credits claim. Otherwise, they may have to claim Universal Credit instead. Depending on their circumstances, they may also be able to claim the Sure Start Maternity Grant for you, and Healthy Start vouchers may carry on after your baby is born.

If you or your parents have come from outside the UK, rights to claim benefits may depend on their immigration status. You should seek advice if you are not sure whether you or your parents can claim.

If you are a single parent (not living with a partner) and you live in England or Wales, you can contact Gingerbread for advice. In Scotland, you can contact One Parent Families Scotland and in Northern Ireland, Gingerbread NI. If you live with a partner, you can contact our helpline.

Once you are 16

Once you are 16, there are more benefits you can claim in your own right. Have a look at our information.

Have you heard about your right to request flexible working? Watch our film to find out more.

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