Social Grants for Children

All about Child Support Grants, Grants for Care Givers, Children's Rights, Women and Health and more on Mywage South Africa.

If parents have no money to support a child then the primary care-giver can apply for a Child Support Grant (CSG). A primary care-giver is any person who takes responsibility for the daily needs of a child and who may or may not be related to the child.

Child Support Grants

The Child Support Grant is there to provide for the basic needs of South African children up to the age of 14 years whose parents or primary care-givers are not able to provide sufficient support because of unemployment or poverty. The amount of the grant is currently R290 per month for every child under the age of 15 years.

For up-to-date information on grant amounts click here

It does not matter whether you are the parent of the child or not, or whether the parents of the child are living together, whether they are married or not married, whether either of the parents is in prison or not, or whether the husband or wife receives another state grant.

Who can apply for a Child Support Grant?

A primary care-giver can apply for the Child Support Grant on behalf of a child or children in his or her care. The primary care-giver must be older than 16 years old. 

The grant is paid to the primary care-giver. The grant follows the child. This means that if someone else becomes the primary care-giver, then the grant goes to that person.

The primary care-giver is responsible for ensuring that the child is fed, clothed, immunised, and given access to health-care.

The child’s ability to get the grant will depend on the financial situation of the primary care-giver and their spouse. If the primary care-giver is a single parent, they should first try to get money from the child’s other parent through applying for a maintenance order.

What is the financial criteria for payment of the grants?

The financial criteria for payment of child support grants is based on:

  • Personal income of the primary care-giver or spouse
  • Where the child is living ( rural or urban area)
  • The type of dwelling that the child is living in: informal (shack/hut) or formal (brick/concrete/asbestos walls)

Who can apply?

The person who applies must:

  • Be the primary care-giver of the child
  • Be over the age of 16 years
  • Be living with the child in South Africa at the time of the application for the grant
  • Be a South African citizen
  • Pass the means test

When can you not apply for a grant?

A primary care-giver cannot apply for a grant if:

  • They are being paid to look after a child
  • Someone else is already getting a grant for the child
  • They represent an institution which takes care of the child
  • They do not qualify in terms of the means test
  • A child does not have a valid birth certificate

What is the means test to qualify for a Child Support Grant?

In order to qualify for a Child Support Grant the primary care-giver must pass a means test to see if the child is eligible for the grant. 

Income threshold

  • A single person should not earn more than R 31 200 per year, or R2600 per month.
  • A married person’s joint income with his/her spouse should not be more than R62 400 per year, or R5200 per month.

How can a primary care-giver apply for a Child Support Grant?

 You can apply for the child support grant by filling in an application form at your nearest District Welfare office or counter service point of a District Office. You do not need to pay anything to make the application.

 The following documents are required for the application:

  • Primary care-giver’s South African identity document
  • Child’s identity document or birth certificate
  • Proof that the child has been immunised
  • Proof of any maintenance received from a parent of the child, or proof of efforts made to obtain maintenance from a parent
  • Proof of your earnings and what you own, and proof of the regular income of the household in which you live
  • The employer must fill in a special form for an employer's report. If you are unemployed, a social worker can write a report for you saying why you should get the grant
  • If married, a marriage certificate
  • If divorced, the court order giving details of custody of the child
  • If the primary care-giver is not the parent of the child, a letter or affidavit from the parent of the child giving the person permission to take care of the child
  • A death certificate if one or both parents are dead, or if the father or mother is missing, proof of this, like a missing person's report from the police and sworn statements from you and another family member

All copies of documents must be certified. This means they must be signed and stamped by a police officer or any other commissioner of oaths.

The applicant will be given you a copy of the application or a dated receipt signed by the SASSA officer. This provides proof of the application.

If your application is refused, you will get a letter explaining why it has been refused and how you can appeal.

How can you get paid the Child Support Grant?

When you make the application, you should say how you would like the money to be paid - in cash on specific days at a Pay Point, or electronically into your bank account. 

Payments start after three months. The payments will be backdated to the day you applied for the grant. You can find out what has happened to your application and when you can expect payment by telephoning the free South African Social Security Agency telephone number 0800 601 011.

When will payments stop?

Payments will stop if you (the guardian) die, if the child dies, when the child becomes too old, or if someone else starts looking after the child, or if your circumstances change in any other way so that you don't qualify for the grant anymore. Your grant will be reviewed from time to time to check this. 

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