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How to Get Bereavement Support Payments

When a spouse or partner passes away, it can be a very difficult time. Not just emotionally but also financially. Apart from the usual funeral expenses, you are now having to deal with living without another income. That is why the Bereavement Support Benefit was established. Can you get access to this help? Keep reading to find out if you can claim support and what you must do to get it.

How to Apply For Bereavement Support Payment

What is Bereavement Support?

Bereavement support is a form of financial assistance you can claim when your spouse or civil partner has passed. In order to access this benefit, you must fulfil the requirements and submit the required documentation as part of the application process. How much bereavement leave you can get depends on your personal circumstances.

Do I qualify?

You might be eligible to claim time off work and Bereavement Support payments if your spouse or civil partner died within the last 21 months. You must inform your employer as soon as possible and make a claim within the first three months to get the total amount. You can apply up to 21 months following your partner's death, but it will render fewer payments in the long run.

Additionally, you can qualify if when they died, you were under State Pension age and living in the UK. Besides, your your partner must have either:

If your spouse or partner passed more than 21 months ago, you might still be able to claim bereavement benefits. Contact the Bereavement Service helpline for more information.

How much can I get?

The Bereavement Support scheme is broken down to receive a larger initial payment and then 18 monthly payments after that. They might look something like this:

Rate Initial Payment Monthly Payment
High-End Rate £3500 £350
Low-End Rate £2500 £100

You must inform your benefits office if you begin receiving bereavement payments. If you qualify for a Child Benefit, you will receive the higher rate. This also applies if you were pregnant at the time of your spouse's or partner's passing. Otherwise, you'll receive the lowest pay.

Know that when you receive any other benefits, your bereavement payments won't affect your other benefits for the first year following your initial payment.

How to Claim Bereavement Payments

There are three ways you can apply for Bereavement Support Payments. They are:

  • Online: the online form is currently in a trial state and can only accept a limited number of applicants each day.
  • Over the phone: you can phone the Bereavement Service helpline on 0800 151 2012 to process your claim.
  • By post. You can download and complete the form or
  • or reach out to your nearest Jobcentre Plus to acquire one through the post. Then simply fill it out and post it back to the address on the top of the form.

If you are abroad, you can call the International Pension Centre to apply. Know that in Northern Ireland, you can only submit your claim on the phone or through the post.

Documentation needed

To get signed off work for bereavement and get support payments, you must provide the following information:

  • • Your National Insurance Number (NIN)
  • • Your bank or building society account details
  • • The date of your partner or spouse's passing
  • • Your partner or spouse’s National Insurance number

What to do When Someone Dies

Following a death, these are the steps to follow, from registering their passing through to dealing with their estate:

  • 1. Register the death within five days
  • 2. Make funeral arrangements. There might be assistance to help with funeral costs. Learn more about this here.
  • 3. Inform the Government using the Tell Us Once service. This allows you to report a death to all government bodies simultaneously.
  • 4. Look into Bereavement Support payments. You might be eligible for financial assistance if:
  • - Your spouse or civil partner has passed.
  • - You are raising a child whose parents have died.
  • 5. Apply for probate and look into inheritance tax. You might need to apply for probate and check to see if you owe any inheritance taxes before you can deal with the estate.
  • 6. Deal with their estate. You can pay any outstanding debts or taxes associated with the estate and then divide up the assets according to their final will.
How to get bereavement support
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