Bereavement Allowance (weekly payment)

Who is it for?
Men and women widowed after 9/4/2001 who are aged 45 and over, but under pensionable age, with no dependent children

Who pays it?
Job Centre Plus

Which leaflet? And how is it claimed?
On form BB1 from local Job Centre Plus or downloaded from or by calling 0800 0 55 66 88 Text phone: 0800 0 23 48 88.  Claimant may face an initial ‘work focussed interview’ when claiming.

What are the age limits?
See under ‘Who is it for?’ above.

National Insurance based?
Yes, unless partner’s death due to industrial accident or disease.

Means tested?

How long does it last?
52 weeks or claimant reaches pensionable age, whichever comes first.

What is effect on other benefits?
Fully taken into account by all means tested benefits.

Is it taxable?

Increases for dependants?
Not applicable (widows and widowers with dependents should get widowed parents allowance).

Payable if in EU or other?
Yes, but if outside EU check uprating.

Points to watch
Payment limited to maximum of 52 weeks, unlike widow’s pension, which it replaced. People who come off widowed parents allowance will only get bereavement allowance if this happens within 52 weeks of spouses death (and then only until end of those 52 weeks).  Since Dec 2005, civil partners (i.e same sex couples who have registered their partnership)  can access bereavement allowance on same basis as married couples. Unmarried/unregistered couples cannot access bereavement allowance

You can view details of benefit amounts on the Community Care Inform website

The A-Z of Benefits 2009 was compiled by Gary Vaux and Community Care Inform


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