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Can Grandparents Receive Financial Help For Raising Their Grandchildren?

By: Elizabeth Grace - Updated: 2 Oct 2019 | comments*Discuss
Grandchildren Grandparents Children

In the UK alone, there are thousands of children who are being cared for full time by their grandparents and while these grandchildren are most definitely welcomed and loved, providing such care can sometimes be a financial burden for their grandparents. There is help available for grandparents in need, however, and such assistance can make it far easier to handle raising a second generation.

Determining Financial Need for Grandparents

Some grandparents have the means to support their grandchildren, but others may not be so fortunate. Young grandparents may still be raising their own children when the need arises to take on grandkids, and older grandparents have often retired and may be living on fixed incomes, leaving little extra for the unexpected expenses associated with raising their children's children.

Grandparenting is sometimes all about special treats and fun outings, but for other grandparents, the responsibilities of parenthood return when they step in to raise their grandchildren. The willingness to offer everyday help is quite a gift, and there is no shame in applying for and accepting financial aid.

Child Benefits and Child Tax Credits

Grandparents who have grandchildren living with them qualify for child benefits and should contact their local authority for advice. Unfortunately, benefit amounts tend to vary a great deal and are given at the discretion on the authority, so there is no guarantee that the amounts will be sufficient to help make ends meet. Some benefits, such as child tax credits, are available only to grandparents if they've made the commitment to take permanent responsibility for the child(ren).

Residence Orders and Special Guardianships

Residence orders specify where a child is to live and typically gives the parents shared responsibility for the care of the child. When a residence order is in place, the local authority may pay out an allowance to help with some of the costs of child rearing. Grandparents who have applied for residence orders for the care of their grandkids may wish to seek the advice of a solicitor to assure that they receive all of the benefits that they are eligible for.

Special guardianships provide a permanent solution for grandparents who are taking care of their grandchildren due to the children's parents' inability or unwillingness to provide hands-on care, but when adoption is not deemed to be the best answer. A Special Guardianship Order (SGO) allows the grandparents to make most decisions regarding the care and welfare of the grandchildren in their care whilst preserving the parents' legal rights as parents, should they one day become more capable of resuming their parental responsibilities.

Grandparents who have been granted special guardianships should contact their local authority if they are in need of financial or other types of assistance. Payments may be determined in a case by case basis, with the level of need considered when granting either ongoing payments or in some instances, single payments or short term help.

Children who have been placed with their grandparents may be troubled and may have experienced any variety of traumas that resulted in their need to live apart from their parents. Grandparents with SGOs who feel that their grandchildren would benefit from counselling services may be able to get help from their local authority in accessing and paying for such services. The local authority will do all that they can to see that children are provided with sufficient funds and services to make their transition as seamless as possible.

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I have took on my 2 grand children 1 Yr old and 4 Yr old for 4 weeks now, as they have been removed from the family home for long term, I may have to give up my full time job, I have a mortgage to pay for. My husband works full time but his wages wouldn't cover every internal bill plus mortgage. What benefits and help would I been able to get.
Wyper - 2-Oct-19 @ 9:17 PM
I have residential order for my Great Grandson, who will be 7yrs February I've had him since 2weeks after he was born HATI get family Allowance and child credit every week, I am 68yrs but find it harder now his getting older money wise, is there anything I can claim to bring more money in
Ize - 2-Oct-19 @ 5:46 PM
ive had my 11yr old grandaughter livin with me and my husband since may im on income support and dla . can i claim any benefits for her thanks
tracy - 16-Sep-19 @ 8:52 AM
We have had residency of our grandchild since 6 weeks old and he is now 8 years old and the only financial help we have had is family allowance how do we get financial help
Fozzy - 13-Sep-19 @ 5:31 PM
We have had residency of our grandchild since 6 weeks old he is now 8 years old and the only financial help we have had is family allowance how do I go about getting help ?
Fozzy - 13-Sep-19 @ 5:28 PM
My daughter died and I’m looking after my grandchildren I get esa and dla for me child benifit for then and dla for grandson they are 18 and 15 can I claim any thing else please
Milo - 11-Sep-19 @ 3:36 PM
How do I tell my daughter I can’t take care of the children 13 & 4 yrsI have them for 4 days and 4 a week then 1 odd day . We agreed that I gave up work and she would pay for the kids. Slowly the £ got lower and lower each month I have not been given anything toward expenses or food fo over a year . I adore my grandkids but can’t go on like this my only income is £75 I get from my husband. Please can anyone advise me on how to tell her I can’t do this . Many thanks for taking time to read this . from a very confused and desperate granny.
Just Lynda - 26-Aug-19 @ 11:00 PM
I HAVE HAD MY TO GRANDCHILDREN AND THERE MUM LIVING WITH ME FOR FOUR YEARS I've look after them all I have very good bond with the children they have been in a good place with there friend and school until there world was shattered when there dad came back on the scene and had them for a over night stay and refused to send them back is there any think a granparent can do ?
granpa - 14-Aug-19 @ 11:47 PM
I HAVE HAD MY TO GRANDCHILDREN AND THERE MUM LIVING WITH ME FOR FOUR YEARS I've look after them all I have very good bond with the children they been in a good place with THERE friend and school until THERE world was shattered when THERE dad came back on the scene and had them for a over night stay and refused to send them back is THERE any think a granparent can do ?
granpa - 14-Aug-19 @ 11:40 PM
Hi i got a care arrangement order 2 mths ago for my grandaughter she beennin my care sincev9th july 2018 i got no money till we had to switch on to universal credit .. and lost 400 amth of my husbands disability PREMIUM he is now terminal .. i want to know is there a fostering payment i can get for my grandaughter Thank you
Rollie28 - 14-Aug-19 @ 1:00 PM
If I become a carer for my granddaughter how much would it receive, I get tax credits
Nanny - 5-Aug-19 @ 7:29 PM
I have my grandchildren living with me since there mother died in December 2012 I get child benefit and tax credits for them would like to no how I could claim guardianship allowance for them and do I need to apply for residence ordered for them
Lynn - 4-Aug-19 @ 2:27 PM
we have legal custody of grandson wanted to find out what help we could get if any
grandad - 29-Jul-19 @ 11:24 PM
My husband and I have parentalresponsibility for our grandson , We have looked after him for eight years would like to know if we are entitled to any benefits towards his keep an upbringing .
Bubble - 17-Jul-19 @ 1:08 PM
I am raisingmy 2 granddaughters since july 2017we get special guardianship help once a month I d there any help I can get for myself as not working at the moment any kind of pensions etc
Lou - 11-Jul-19 @ 10:15 AM
I have two grandchildren that have live with me and my daughterthere mum for 4years until last week when there farther had them over night and refused to send them back hes only just come back on the scene with supervised access and as applied for interim order is there any think i can do as a grandparent
granpa - 24-Jun-19 @ 6:42 AM
I've had my grandaughter since birth I have legal guardian from court.i receive £50 a week from council my husband and I are retired she is now 16 .should I have received more
Lolly - 19-Jun-19 @ 4:55 PM
Hi we have had a residency order for our granddaughter since 2009 we receive child benefit for her and would like to know if there is anything else we can claim thankyou
Rae - 18-Jun-19 @ 12:16 PM
I got a residence order for my granddaughter who's eight years old I had residence order since 12-09-2012 I get child benefit and child tax I did get JSA I would like to no if there's anything else I can claim
Me - 11-Jun-19 @ 2:00 PM
Hi ...I'm currently applying for SGO for3 grandchildren .I am in a 1 bed flat with the children .Should the local Authority be giving me a larger property . Thank you
Julie Lennox - 5-Jun-19 @ 5:16 AM
My son recently list his wife has gone back to work and I am looking after my 2 young grandchildren am I entitled to claim anything
Dee - 29-May-19 @ 1:42 PM
Hi I have got my 4 grandchildren living with me through social services as they was takin of my daughter and court has gave us temporary care of them at moment got to go back to court in 4 months my husband works but can't afford 4 children with his wages social services said they would give usabout 130 pounds a week but that's not enough as we r spending 50 pounds more a week on food and been spending like 150 a week on them can I claim any think thanks
Jo - 5-May-19 @ 6:41 PM
Hi my daughter has just died and her husband is going back to work shortly. AsI don't work I would like to look after grandchildren aged 5 years &18 months, am I entitled to any benefits as I live with son in law at the moment. I hope to move out soon through local council
Chellie - 30-Apr-19 @ 2:40 PM
My granddaughter is living with her other grandparents but wants to come and live with me. I don’t work but my husband does it will be quite a financial burden on us is there anything I’ll be able to claim towards her financial upkeep thank you
Ange - 30-Apr-19 @ 11:14 AM
Can I get hel. Financial for looking after my granson until it goes to court
les - 17-Apr-19 @ 1:32 PM
So social services put my granddaughter in my care. Which is ok but the state says I can't claim for her because I'm on state pension. Iv worked all my life and asked this government for nothing When I need help all doors are closed.Not bad for a full paying tax payer all my working life.
Encebras - 12-Apr-19 @ 1:37 PM
can some one advise me on what effect it will have on my benefits if my 16 grandson moves in whilst he attends fulltime education as I keep getting conflicting advice
pundle - 1-Apr-19 @ 5:56 PM
I have been caring for my grandson since oct 2018. he suffers from mental health problems..the social services agreed to pay/support us at £350 per week but have failed to pay anything since the 28th Jan 2019can I get legal help to make the social services pay what they owe us.... kind regards Frank
franko - 22-Mar-19 @ 11:11 AM
I have my grandson I have had to take unpaid leave what help am I entitled to
Chris - 16-Mar-19 @ 8:35 AM
I've had my granddaughter since she was 3 she's now 10 I'm working 36 hours a week I get child benefit but nothing else is there anymore help I can get kind regards zina
Zina - 14-Mar-19 @ 9:57 AM
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