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Can Grandparents Receive Financial Help For Raising Their Grandchildren?

By: Elizabeth Grace - Updated: 27 Sep 2020 | 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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My daughter is struggling and her kids are living with me can I get help
Jackieh - 27-Sep-20 @ 12:44 AM
My 17 year old grandson has come to live with me so he can attend college I claim pension credit I’ve applied for child benefit He’s applied for bursary I’m told he qualifies is there any other Financial help I can get I’m disabled and get pip high mobility
Patsy - 24-Sep-20 @ 2:46 PM
My daughter had a massive stroke 18 months ago.her partner has been removed through social workers.we want to know if one of us has to give up work to foster them.what are we entitled to.my wife goes on a 3 day week soon and I work from week to week on an agency.
Simmo - 24-Sep-20 @ 12:02 PM
Had my grandkids for 16weeks now social services brought her to me 5.30 in the evening haned her to me in a white babygrow 1/4 tin of.baby milk and have lefted me with it don't cheek on her I've had no sopport or no money for her yet social services have never ask if she needs 5nappies or anything p
Cherry - 13-Sep-20 @ 11:27 PM
we have an SGO for our adopted daughters son aged 7. We have had him since birth. We get CB for him and a small allowance from Social Services, but my OH should retire at the end of the year, and I can only work part time due to long term arthritis, can we claim any assistance financially, otherwise my OH will need to keep working indefinitely.
adjocala - 12-Sep-20 @ 10:36 PM
Hi, my granddaughter will be living with me now as social services said mum is not coping. My husband and I will now be her guardians through a court order. We are on ESA and PIP as he's disabled and I'm his carer. In regards to caring for my granddaughter, what benefits would I have to apply for? Thanks!
Lou - 8-Sep-20 @ 1:23 PM
Hi I will have to give up work to look after my grandson as social service have said that the mum is unable to.They said we have him or he will go to foster care.As we didn’t want this I will have to give work up.Can I get any financial help.Many thanks
Nan - 31-Aug-20 @ 3:49 PM
My daughter and granddaughter both live with me .When my daughter. Starts work. I will be. Looking my granddaughter. Am I entitled to any thing for looking after her
Leapardskinp - 26-Aug-20 @ 7:28 PM
Hi me and my husband areon penion credit and pip we are have are 8 year old granson living with us can we get ant help ?
Elizie - 25-Aug-20 @ 3:54 PM
Hi me and my husband are on penion credit and pip my 8 year old granson lives with us can we claim anything for him
Elizie - 25-Aug-20 @ 3:50 PM
.y granddaughter lives with me mam is refusing to give up her benefits for her can I still claim for her
Anne63 - 19-Aug-20 @ 2:43 PM
My grandaughter is 13 been living with me for 18 months mam says she can stay but won't give up any of her benefits for her can I still claim for her
Anne63 - 19-Aug-20 @ 2:40 PM
Hiya I have custody and reserdence of my ex girlfriends 14 year old grandaughter ( I'm the only grandad theay no) I'm on UC wot help can I get? Allso I have 25% P.R Of her brother who lives with my ex he's 12 IAM on housing regestar as living in a 1bed at mo as my ex disabled and I have the boy half the week can I apply for a bed room for him as well as his sister
Monsterman - 17-Aug-20 @ 11:20 AM
I was looking after my grandson for nearly a year his mam still had a section 20 to have him back home anytime she wanted my last payment was 29th may and waiting to receive another 2 payments for the amount of time I had him but I kept him in my money till his money went back on from finances and now he has been took of me do I still get paid for the time I have had him for
Julie rainger123 - 3-Jul-20 @ 6:09 PM
Hi I am on Universal credit and care for ny 2 year old granddaughter the court served a care order. Will I get help.of UC for being her kinship.foster parent
Den - 2-Jul-20 @ 12:08 PM
Hi just wonder if anyone can advise me on me having my 17 yr grandson live with me .im a pensioner what other benefits can I get as he wants to go to collage in September he will have no income
Zip wire queen - 28-Jun-20 @ 9:47 PM
Hi My granddaughter has been placed in my care her mummy has signed section 20 I am on UC wonder if I am entitled to benefits for my granddaughter aged 2 yrs The social worker has told my the fostering team are coming out to me sometime Thanks wendy
Den - 12-Jun-20 @ 9:28 AM
We have taken guardianship of our 2 year old grand daughter Can you let me know what financial support we are entitled to. My wife is 58 and earns 15k a year I’m 62 and earn 48k a year Please let me know if there is any support available Regards Malcolm
Malc - 10-Jun-20 @ 10:15 PM
I have my grandson living with me he’s 15 ,I’m a widow and on esa of 240 a fournight ,I’ve just been awarded 21.05 a week which is not enough to get food clothing and anything else for him is there anything else I can put in for to help me
Jano - 2-Jun-20 @ 11:32 AM
We have had our 12 year old grandson live with us for 18 months. Social services originally asked us to look after him until problems at home were sorted. He was living with dad and step mum. The birth mother has had no contact with him since he was 4. Social services closed the case last April as dad and step mum told them we would sort it ourselves, I had asked social services not to close the case until it was all resolved. I do get the child benefit now but no other financial support as both myself and my husband work. Although we are not on great salaries we are above the threshold to claim any further benefits. We are finding it increasingly difficult to support our grandson financially. He will soon need new school uniform and will have school trips coming up which we are unable to afford. In theory we are foster parents, so surely we should get foster care allowance. Please advise of anything we can claim as social services are not helping and the parents don't even see him any more
Netty - 13-May-20 @ 12:12 PM
I’m currently looking after my 15yr old grandson as mother doesn’t want him and father prefers his wife he has parental control which he won’t give up I’m not in very good health and really struggling any advice welcome
Sue - 10-Mar-20 @ 1:26 PM
I have had my grandson since birth he is 6yrs old now I was granted guardianship in 2014 it's been hard hes not seen his parents for near on 2yrs I had enquired about adoption and was told it would confuse him as I'm his nannie but recently hes been questioning what will happen him when anything happens to me him quoting he as no family its heart breaking to hear and ivw tried explaining all his uncles and auntie are family with his cousins but it dont help he doesn't understand
Claud - 10-Mar-20 @ 12:38 PM
Hi hoping someone has advice we are currently caring for our grandsons ages 1 and 2 the 2 year old has a care order shared between mum and local authority we had a positive sgo last year but now going through a kinship assessment mum claims benefits for the children and does not contribute anything financially for the little ones local authority cannot set up regular payment for them as they state the kinship assessment needs to be completed first we are on universal credit ourselves with our own 9 year old son we manage but it's a struggle at times any advice please
Kpsg - 4-Mar-20 @ 7:17 PM
We have a residenceorder for my granddaughterwho has lived with us since she was 8 monthsold. She is now thirteen. We were both on the state pension but now my husband has died so I dont get his pension anymore am I entitled to any extra benefits? I do get child benefit now for her though .
Mary - 26-Feb-20 @ 8:16 PM
My grandson as been with me since birth, he is 3 years old and social services have ask me to go for half parental responsibility but I would over rule his mother as she lives in her own place and she suffers a lot with her own disability, my grandson also receives high rate disability, I have just moved to universal credit and waiting on payments, is there any thing else I could get to help us financially?
Jojo - 17-Jan-20 @ 2:35 PM
My grandchildren were removed from there mother 8 week. And ave been put in my temporary care. I have had to pack in my job to be able to look after them. Taking and picking up from school etc. They are 4 and 6 years old. Am I entitled to any benefits
Dee - 17-Jan-20 @ 9:06 AM
my daughter died last year from cancer and now I’m bring up my 8year old granddaughter . I’m claiming child benefit but is there any thing else I can get to help . We do have a residency order in place and she spends every other weekend with her father but he doesn’t pay for her.
Trish - 5-Jan-20 @ 8:51 AM
Our 4 year old grandson has lived with us for 2 years under a child arrangement order. We do not qualify for child tax credits. Is there any other benefits/funds we can access?
Liz - 29-Nov-19 @ 2:36 PM
I have 3 grandchildren living with me I am In the processof applying for guardianshipbecause I took the kids in getting no help from social serviced I have just received childbenefit and I'm waiting for universal credit is there anything else I can claim fori get esa thank you
Bigmamma - 14-Nov-19 @ 1:22 PM
My granddaughter been with me an husband since 18months old she is now 11 we have a residence order we are now on benefits get child tax credit and family allowance but finding it financial difficult for the last 3 years so could we get some sort of financial benefit/help
Trace - 3-Nov-19 @ 2:32 PM
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