Bereaved parents whose partner died between 9 April 2001 and 8 February 2023 are being encouraged to check their eligibility for backdated financial support by the Department for Communities.
Eligibility for Bereavement Support Payment and Widowed Parent’s Allowance was extended to cohabiting parents with dependent children on 9 February 2023.
Previously only available to eligible bereaved partners who were married or in a civil partnership with the deceased person at the time of their death, February’s extension of eligibility opened a 12-month window for cohabiting parents to backdate their claims.
This means parents whose partner died before 9 February 2023 have until 8 February 2024 to claim. After this, it will not be possible to claim Widowed Parents Allowance and parents will not get their full entitlement to a backdated payment of Bereavement Support Payment.
The benefit a parent may be eligible to claim will depend on the date their partner died.
If their partner died before 6 April 2017, they would need to make a claim for Widowed Parents Allowance. Claims for Widowed Parents Allowance can be made over the telephone by ringing 0800 085 2463 option 3 or through a paper application form, which can be downloaded from NI Direct.
More details on eligibility and how to make a claim for Widowed Parents Allowance can be found at: NI Direct
If their partner died on or after 6 April 2017, they would need to make a claim for Bereavement Support Payment, which has replaced Widowed Parents Allowance. Claims for Bereavement Support Payment can be made over the phone by calling 0800 085 2463 option 1 or through a paper application form, which can be downloaded from NI Direct.
More details on eligibility and how to make a claim for Bereavement Support Payment can be found at NI Direct
Further bereavement help and support can also be found at NI Direct
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