Money Wellness
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calendar icon08 Aug 2023

Bereaved cohabiting parents could be missing out on financial help

Cohabiting parents whose partner passed away in the past two years have just six months left to claim backdated financial help after eligibility criteria was changed earlier this year.

The Bereavement Support Payment and Widowed Parent’s Allowance provides help with the financial impact of losing a partner.

Previously the scheme only provided financial support to parents who were married or in a civil partnership. However, it was extended in February this year to include cohabiting parents with dependent children.

When the scheme was extended, the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) offered 12 months for cohabiting parents to backdate their claims. This means parents whose partner died before 9th February 2023 have until 8th February 2024 to claim the support they’re entitled to.


What can you claim?

The benefit you’re eligible for depends on the date your partner died. If your partner passed away before 6th April 2017, you would need to claim Widowed Parent’s Allowance.

If they died on or after 6th April 2017, you would need to claim Bereavement Support Payment, which has replaced Widowed Parent’s Allowance.

The earliest point payment can be backdated is 30th August 2018, even if your partner died before this date.


Who qualifies for bereavement payment?

Parents must be under state pension age (currently 66 years old), have paid a certain amount in national insurance contributions and be either pregnant or have a dependent child on the day your partner died.


You can find more help with dealing with money worries after the death of a loved one in our guide.

Money worries after the death of a loved one (

Avatar of Caroline Chell

Caroline Chell

Caroline has worked in financial communications for more than 10 years, writing content on subjects such as pensions, mortgages, loans and credit cards, as well as stockbroking and investment advice.

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