If you need help with the cost of your new baby

You may be able to claim a Sure Start Maternity Grant. This is a grant of £500 to pay towards the cost of a new baby where it is the only child under 16 in the household. You do not have to pay it back. If you (or your partner) are claiming Income Support, income-based JSA or income related ESA you can claim this before the baby is born—apply from 11 weeks before the baby is due.

Otherwise you may be able to claim in the first 3 months after your baby is born if you are on a low income – based on the level of tax credits you are entitled to. Ring the Jobcentre Plus new claims helpline, or download form SF100 from www.gov.uk.