Claiming Bereavement Support
The death of a spouse or partner is a very difficult experience. This change in your life can be even harder if it means that you now have no choice but to live on a lower income. You may be entitled to claim Bereavement Support Payment to help ease some of the financial worries you may be facing and get back on your feet again.
The system of claiming bereavement benefits has changed. Previously, you were eligible to claim either Bereavement Allowance (formerly known as Widow’s Pension), Widowed Parent Allowance or Bereavement Payment. These have now been amalgamated to form the Bereavement Support Payment.
What is Bereavement Support Payment?
Bereavement Support Payment is a welfare benefit that you may be able to claim, depending on your relationship with the person who died and whether you were married or in a civil partnership or living with your partner. These benefits are available to anyone, regardless of their income level, and can even apply to those that are not working.
Which benefits and how much you qualify for will also depend on the following factors:
Basic Eligibility Criteria
- the bereavement happened on or after 6 April 2017
- you are aged over 45 but under State Pension age*
- it’s been under three months since the death
*you may be entitled to claim if you are over the State pension age if your late partner was not entitled to a State pension based on their National Insurance contributions.
How Does it Work?
The payment consists of an initial lump sum totalling £2,500 (£3,500 if you have children) and an additional 18 monthly instalments of £100.
The payments are not taxable and are disregarded in the benefit cap when calculating entitlement to means-tested benefit.
To claim Bereavement Allowance, download a BSP1 form from GOV.UK or order a form from your local Jobcentre plus. Then take the completed form to your local Jobcentre plus, or send it to:
Bereavement Support Payment
Mail Handling Site A
For additional advice or help on how to claim, you can call the Bereavement Service helpline on 0800 731 0469.