What maternity benefits am I entitled to?

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As a pregnant lady, you have the right to be granted a maternity leave. There are also other benefits that accompany the maternity leave including maternity allowances which you receive from the Department - we are not affiliated with any organisation mentioned. for Work and Pension. If you are employed, your employer should give you Statutory Maternity Pay. Also, during your pregnancy, you receive free prescriptions and dental care. Some people can join a government scheme known as the Healthy Start.

Here is a summary of maternity benefits in the UK:

The right to a maternity leave

The right to a maternity leave is your basic right as a pregnant woman. Your employer is supposed to allow you a maternity leave of up to 52 weeks regardless of whether you are eligible for a Statutory Maternity Pay. You should note that the period you have worked for the company or organization does not determine if you are entitled or the number of weeks you have. You can start the leave 11 weeks before the birth of the child.

Statutory Maternity Pay

This is a 39-week pay that the employer should give you if you have work for him or her for a period of 26 weeks before the fifteenth week when the baby is due. For the first 6 weeks, you get 90% of your weekly normal earnings. For the rest of the remaining weeks, you get either £140.98 per week or 90% of the average weekly salary you earn. You can get the SMP as early as 11 weeks before childbirth.

Maternity Allowance

If you are not eligible for Statutory Maternity Pay, your employer provides you with an SMP1 form which enables you to claim maternity allowance. To get this allowance, you must have been self-employed or worked for an organization for at least 26 weeks during the 66 weeks of your pregnancy up to a week before childbirth and earned an average of £30 in 13 weeks. You claim the allowance from the gov.uk website or Jobcentre Plus office.

Sure Start Maternity Grant

This is a sum of £500 that helps low-income people to be able to buy things for their newborn. You can claim the money as from the eleventh week when the baby is due up to the third month of the baby. You may get the grant if your partner is disabled, not employed, or gets any other kind of income support. There are other Maternity Grants too.

Prescriptions and dental care

You are eligible for free prescription and dental care if you are pregnant. You apply for a certificate which is signed by the doctor which is usually valid for the period you are pregnant and a year later.

Healthy Start Scheme

This is a governmental program the gives vouchers to pregnant ladies worth £3.10. They can be used to buy milk, infant milk formula, fruits and vegetables and vitamin supplements. Pregnant ladies who are under 18 years of age and children between the age of 1 to 4 can apply.

Department - we are not affiliated with any organisation mentioned. Call Connection Phone Numbers - we are in no way affiliated with any organisation mentioned
Maternity Grant (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2417
Statutory Maternity Pay (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 902 8133
Social Fund (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 506 0283
Crisis Loan (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2336
Jobcentre Appointments (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2322
Job Seeker’s Allowance Claims (New Claims & Existing) (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2383
Employment & Support Allowance (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2374
Income Support (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2374
Incapacity Benefit (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 504 0374
Universal Credit (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2382
Universal Credit (New Claims & Appointments) (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2382
Maternity Allowance (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 504 9433
Personal Independence Payment (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2380

Community Care Grant call connection contact number

This site offers advice and call forwarding options, and we are in no way affiliated with any organisation mentioned on this website. Calls to 084 numbers cost up to 7p per minute plus your network access charge.

Are you facing short-term financial problems and receiving any kind of income support? Then you may qualify for a non-repayable Community Care Grant.

Do I qualify for a Community Care Grant? How do I contact them?

You may qualify if you’re in receipt of Jobseeker’s Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support, a Pension credit or payments connected with one of these. You may also qualify if you will receive one of these benefits during the next six weeks and are leaving care. If you would like to contact the Community Care Grant team, you can do so by using one of our call connection numbers below.

Department - we are not affiliated with any organisation mentioned. Call Connection Phone Numbers - we are in no way affiliated with any organisation mentioned
Social Fund (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 506 0283
Crisis Loan (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2336
Community Care Grant (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2387
Jobcentre Appointments (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2322
Job Seeker’s Allowance Claims (New Claims & Existing) (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2383
Employment & Support Allowance (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2374
Income Support (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2374
Incapacity Benefit (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 504 0374
Universal Credit (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2382
Universal Credit (New Claims & Appointments) (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2382
Maternity Allowance (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 504 9433
Personal Independence Payment (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2380

You may qualify if you are moving out of residential or institutional care in order to live independently, or a voluntary organisation or local council is moving you to a new residence.

You may also get one to enable you to remain at home instead of moving into hospital or residential care. This is best done by contacting the Community Care Grant team.

You may qualify if caring for someone ill, disabled or released from jail on a temporary licence.

You can claim for temporary circumstances that impact upon your dignity or which cause stress, such as family breakdown, particularly if a relative has a long-term ailment.

Financial help may be available to attend a family member’s funeral or for visiting a seriously ill person.

What will the Community Care Grant team now let me get a grant for?

Such grants cannot be used to fund long-term financial strategies, such as investing; or for work-related costs, such as fuel expenses (except in certain particular circumstances).

This is an advice site that also offers call forwarding options, and we are in no way affiliated with the Department - we are not affiliated with any organisation mentioned. for Work & Pensions, Community Care Grants, or any other organisation mentioned on this website.

You can’t use them to pay for a phone or its call charges. This is especially sad given that many people may have to pay to be connected through to the Community Care Grant team.

A grant will not be given to cover training or education, school meals, uniforms, sports clothes/equipment or school travel costs.

Requests that clash with other government activities are also excluded. Therefore you can’t use it to clear debts to another government department. You also can’t claim it to fund court appearances or other legal proceedings.

If you need money to repair a property rented from a local authority/housing association, or to fund removal of goods or for storage when your local authority is prepared to help you with those tasks, your application will fail. Domestic help is likewise excluded.

This is an advice site that also offers call forwarding options, and we are in no way affiliated with the Department - we are not affiliated with any organisation mentioned. for Work & Pensions, Community Care Grants, or any other organisation mentioned on this website.

The majority of housing costs and Council Tax are not covered.

Your request will almost certainly be turned down if your need applies outside the UK.

A claim for expenses below £30 will probably fail unless requested for daily living expenses or travel. Food and groceries will qualify as daily expenses only if you’re caring for a young offender or prisoner released under temporary licence. It’s unusual to be granted a payment if you’ve already requested that the same services or goods be funded within the last 28 days.

If I contact the Community Care Grant team, how much will I get?

That depends upon your circumstances. If you and your partner are not yet 60, with more than £500 in savings (£1,000 if either of you is over 60), the amount may be reduced.

The grant will not affect any benefits you receive. A call to the Community Care Grant team will resolve this worry.

How is a Community Care Grant paid?

Directly into your bank account.

How do I apply for a Community Care Grant?

Fill out an SF300 form which you can download online or get from a Jobcentre Plus. If you’re in residential or institutional care, you are able to submit an application up to six weeks before your expected leaving date but remember that this form cannot be used by those in Northern Ireland.

How can I appeal a Community Care Grant decision?

If you are unhappy with a decision, you can ask for it to be reviewed, by writing to Jobcentre Plus.

If you’re still not satisfied, you can ask that a Social Fund Inspector reviews the decision. This review will normally take less than 12 days.

Search For Lenders Who Offer Fast Cash

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What has replaced Crisis Loans?

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We are often asked what is the crisis loan replacement? and the cold hard truth is that there is nothing set up nationally to replace Crisis Loans

Since the Social Fund was disbanded in 2013 and the Government removed the discretionary loans provision that included Rent in Advance and Crisis loans there has been a sharp decline in the number of ways that people can access emergency help when they have no alternative means of support or income.

With the scrapping of the Crisis loan provision the government asked local authorities to offer an alternative in the form of the Local Welfare fund, whilst this was intended to be a safety net for vulnerable families it is not as accessible as the old loans system and can not be classed as being a crisis loan replacement as in most cases service users are asked to attend the Job Centre for a referral for Food Vouchers or a referral to the local food bank.

Nearly two years on and the crisis loan alternatives are clearly staining under the pressure to deliver emergency help with ever decreasing budgets that are no longer as well funded by central government and we have seen dozens of local authorities having to make the decision to totally withdraw support and rely solely on the voluntary and charitable sectors for support.

At present the only real crisis loan alternatives are:

An advance of Benefits

Referral to the Local Foodbanks

Housing Benefit Loans

This site offers advice and call forwarding options, and we are in no way affiliated with any organisation mentioned on this website. Calls to 084 numbers cost up to 7p per minute plus your network access charge.

Unfortunately there is no such thing as a Housing Benefit Loan, however, it is possible to get help with your housing benefit from a range of organizations.

Prior to 2013, it was possible to apply to the Social Fund for a Rent in Advance Loan, this was a loan that was delivered out of a discretionary pot of money administered by the Department - we are not affiliated with any organisation mentioned. for Work and Pensions ( DWP).

Typically a Housing Benefit Loan (Rent in the Advance loan) would be awarded to people who were on an income-related benefit like jobseekers allowance or income based Employment Support Allowance and would be issued on the day of application ( or within 48 hours) directly into the applicant’s nominated bank. The value of the award would vary, but would usually cover at least 1 months rent giving time awaiting Housing Benefit being processed and awarded.

Since the abolition of the Social Fund, People who want to apply for help with rent have been directed to their Local Authority who have been given a pot of money to allow them to deliver small short-term loans.

Find out more about Housing Benefit Loans

At present Housing Benefit applications are taking 3-4 weeks to process, however, we have seen cases of it taking up to 6 months!

We have listed the Local Authorities that we have identified as being able to provide a Housing Benefit Loan, or who will at least help with your first month’s payment when moving into a new property.

If you have previously applied to the Social Find for help with housing and your application has been successful, you will still have to repay any money that you borrowed even though the discretionary SF has been disbanded.

We would appreciate any feedback that you have in relation to Housing Benefit Loans and any other sources of funding that you may have found or that may be local to you that will help people cover rent arrears or the cost of moving into a new Home.

Contacting Budgeting Loan

This site offers advice and call forwarding options, and we are in no way affiliated with any organisation mentioned on this website. Calls to 084 numbers cost up to 7p per minute plus your network access charge.

Crisis Loan is no longer available from the Jobcentre / Department - we are not affiliated with any organisation mentioned. for Work and Pensions ( DWP ) as the Social Fund was disbanded back in 2013, however it is still possible to apply for a Budgeting Loan and request a copy of the Budgeting Loan Application form by phone.

Calling Budgteing Loan

The application itself has not changed and you will still be expected to fill out an SF500 form detailing what you need the loan for and then accepting repayment terms assuming that your application is accepted.

To start the application off by telephone you will need to call Jobcentre Plus, they have several telephone numbers and you are able to make the initial application by telephone.

As of 1/1/2015, the latest budgeting loan telephone number is 0345 603 6967.

Check out our tips
Before you scoot off and use the budgeting loan telephone number above, take a look at our tips on speeding up your application for a budgeting loan

Need to speak to a member of the Depart for Work And Pensions about your issues? Our call connection phone numbers should be able to help – get in touch with the right department by dialling one of the contact numbers below.

Department - we are not affiliated with any organisation mentioned. Call Connection Phone Numbers - we are in no way affiliated with any organisation mentioned
Social Fund (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 506 0283
Crisis Loan / Budgeting Loan (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2336
Jobcentre Appointments (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2322
Job Seeker’s Allowance Claims (New Claims & Existing) (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2383
Employment & Support Allowance (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2374
Income Support (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2374
Incapacity Benefit (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 504 0374
Universal Credit (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2382
Universal Credit (New Claims & Appointments) (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2382
Maternity Allowance (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 504 9433
Personal Independence Payment (Calls cost 7ppm + network charges) 0843 509 2380

Calls to the Social Fund on their direct number 0800 169 0140 are free from any BT landline (this include call/phone boxes) and also includes calls from most of the larger mobile phone networks.

How can I get Benefit Loans in the UK?

This site offers advice and call forwarding options, and we are in no way affiliated with any organisation mentioned on this website. Calls to 084 numbers cost up to 7p per minute plus your network access charge.

In the United Kingdom it possible to get Benefit Loans and these come in two types:

Budgeting Loans:

A loan that is made to a Household that is limited to £870 per household per application ( multiple applications can be made, however, no one Household is able to Benefit Loans totalling more than £1500 at any one time)
Budgeting Loans are only paid to people who have been on an income-related benefit for more than 26 weeks and wh can show that the things that they are applying for help with ( the reason for the Benefit Loan) are essential and that they would not be able to find enough money, or obtain a bank loan to cover the cost.

They have recovered a pre-agreed percentage of the benefit that you are due and will run consecutively with any other Benefit Loans that you have to ensure that your repayment does not cause your further financial hardship.

Sort Term Benefits Advance (STBA Loans):

A small loan that can be made to people who have recently made an application to a means-tested benefit like income support, jobseekers allowance ( Income Based) or Employment Support Allowance ( Income Related) and who are awaiting the processing of their application and the first full payment period to pass ( Usually 2-4 weeks).

An STBA Loan is applied for over the telephone and a decision is given within 24-48 hours, and if successful payment is made into your nominated bank on the same day.

 

Budgeting Loan Online Application

This site offers advice and call forwarding options, and we are in no way affiliated with any organisation mentioned on this website. Calls to 084 numbers cost up to 7p per minute plus your network access charge.

We have been considering ways that we can help people to get access to the Budgeting Loan system and have come up with a way to enable applications to be taken/completed online and then for the completed form to be posted out to the applicant with a pre-paid envelope so all that they need to do is sign and post it back the the correct Benefit Centre who will have already been sent an electronic form so that they can begin processing the application.

More information on the Budgeting Loan application

The idea is that we design a secure form with SSL that sends your completed application directly to the DWP by email, then we also send a paper application to you that is already completed based on the online form information with an envelope for your signature.

This way the DWP can start looking at you application on the same day- however as this will take a lot of work on our part, we have a couple of questions- and would like to ask that you take a few minutes to consider and reply below

Click here to find out more about the Budgeting Loan application process – as well as how to get your application started.

How to apply for a Budgeting Loan

Note that this loan only applies to the mainland UK and the islands around mainland UK. Northern Ireland has a different type of budgeting loan.
A budgeting loan is open to anyone who has claimed for the benefit for the whole of the last six months. “Benefit” means income support, income based Job Seeker’s Allowance, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Pension Credit and Universal Credit with Pension Credit (you are not eligible for a Budgeting Loan if you claim for Universal Credit without claiming Pension Credit).

If you are involved in any industrial action or you owe more than 1,500 for a crisis loan or budget loan if you cannot claim for a budgeting loan. One alternative to a budgeting loan is a budgeting advance which it is worthwhile checking you are eligible for.

It will take 15 days for you to be either to be accepted or rejected for a loan. You should receive the money 12 days after the day of acceptance.

As well as applying online, you can print off form SF500 or pick one up from your local Jobseeker’s Plus. You can also ask for the form to be delivered to you, this may take up to 5 working days though. It could take up to 25 working days for a filled in printed form to be processed, so it is quicker to fill in a form online.

Can I still get a budgeting loan?

The smallest amount you can borrow is £100, the maximum amount is £348 if you are single, £464 if you have a partner and £812 if you or your partner are in receipt of child benefit. Whether you receive this money depends on whether it is felt you can pay this money back, whether you have savings of over £1000 (or £2000 if you or your partner are 65 or over) and whether you are still paying back a budgeting or crisis loan.

The good news about a budgeting loan is that it is interest-free. You are usually given 2 years in order to repay a loan. If your weekly benefit is £57.90 you will get a deduction of between £2.90 and 6.95. If your weekly benefit is up to £300 you will get a deduction of between £15 and £36. However, if you stop receiving the benefit you will have to come up with a different way to pay back the loan.

Before choosing a loan it is worth discussing matters with your Job Centre Plus. If you live in Wales you might choose to look into finding out the Discretionary Assistance Fund. If you live in Scotland you might look into a Community Care Grant or Crisis Loan. Unfortunately, English or Welsh people can no longer apply for a Crisis Loan.

No More Cuts to Crisis Provision – Sign the petition Now

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[emailpetition id=”1″]

Sign the petition, don’t let central Government cut what is often the only remaining lifeline for many families without being challenged.

Three-quarters of councils will scrap or shrink support for England’s most vulnerable people if the Government cuts funding next year, leaders claim.

The Local Government Association (LGA) today warned against plans to ditch the £347m Local Welfare Assistance fund, used by town halls to provide emergency support for people facing homelessness, care leavers and families struggling to put food on the table.

A poll suggests the loss of government funding would mean thousands could lose out on support including food vouchers, household essentials and short-term help paying the rent.

Some 15% of local authorities said they would have to completely scrap local welfare assistance schemes if funding was pulled.

Ministers have pledged to formally consult local authorities on the decision to discontinue funding from next April, which councils labeled an ‘important opportunity to reconsider’.

The funding was introduced in 2013 to replace government-provided crisis loans, with councils allocated cash from the £347m pot.

‘Taking away this money could prove counterproductive and risks storing up much bigger, and more costly problems in the longer run,’ said Cllr Claire Kober, chair of the LGA’s resources board.

‘Thousands of people have been helped through local welfare schemes, which have been far more effective at getting support to those most in need than the Government crisis loans scheme which it replaced.

‘Councils will be doing everything in their power to support those who need it most, but with less money and fewer resources to work with this is going to become increasingly difficult. For some local authorities, where budgets are already on the brink, they will have no choice but to close their local welfare assistance schemes down altogether,’ added Cllr Kober.

A Department - we are not affiliated with any organisation mentioned. for Work and Pensions spokesman said: ‘The changes made to the funding of local welfare provision were never about abolishing support and it’s a total misrepresentation to suggest they were. This Government has given councils more control because they understand best their local area’s needs – this is in contrast to the previous centralised grant system, which was inflexible and poorly targeted. We are now consulting on how funding should be provided for 2015/16.’
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Ards Borough Council

This site offers advice and call forwarding options, and we are in no way affiliated with any organisation mentioned on this website. Calls to 084 numbers cost up to 7p per minute plus your network access charge.

Finding the latest contact details for Ards Borough Council including telephone or fax numbers, email or postal addresses can be difficult, so we have collected all of the latest contact details for Ards Borough Council into one place.

Whilst most councils including Ards Borough Council publish contact details on their own websites it is not always easy to find the where they are listed or even what the full name that the local authority or council have listed themselves under.

Ards Borough Council, like most council offices in the UK offer standard business hours and opening times as listed below.

Ards Borough Council deal with customer council contact enquiries about noise and litter pollution, council tax and rent but can also offer advice on other local arrangements and events.

Enquiry Opening times
Monday 9:00-5:00
Tuesday 9:00-5:00
Wednesday 10:00-5:00
Thursday 9:00-5:00
Friday 9:00-4:30
Saturday CLOSED
Sunday CLOSED

Address
Ards Borough Council
2 Church Street
Newtownards
County Down
BT23 4AP
http://www.ards-council.gov.uk/
http://www.ards-council.gov.uk/contact-us/index.php
028 9181 9628

Telephone Numbers:
Ards Borough Council
028 9182 4000

Ards Borough Council E-Mail Address:
ards@ards-council.gov.uk

Whilst we attempt to ensure that all of the contact details that we publish are accurate and up-to-date, it is sometimes the case that councils have updated telephone and contact numbers before we have been able to change our system records and as such would ask that if you do notice any errors that you drop us a line using the form below so that we can update the website with the latest council contact numbers.

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