About the child support grant

The South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) manages the granting of state monies to people in need, who are looking after children that may or may not be their own. In order to qualify for the grant, the applicant (and spouse) must meet the requirements of the means test. Only when the state has determined that you are needy, can you get a grant to help you raise the child you are looking after.

How do you know if you qualify?

There are certain prerequisites you and the child must comply with in order to qualify for the child support grant. Firstly, both you and the child must live in South Africa

You must:

  • Be the child’s primary caregiver (e.g. parent, grandparent or a child over 16 heading a family).
  • Be a South African citizen or permanent resident.
  • Not earn more than R34 800 per year if you are single. If you are married, your combined income should not be above R 69 600 per year.

Note: If you are not the child's parent, you must provide proof that you are the child’s primary caregiver by obtaining:

  • An affidavit from a police official
  • A social worker’s report
  • An affidavit from the biological parent or
  • A letter from the principal of the school attended by the child

The child must:

  • Be under the age of 18 years (born after 31 December 1993)
  • Not be cared for in a state institution
  • Live with the primary caregiver, who is not paid to look after the child

Note: You cannot get this grant for more than six children who are not your biological or legally adopted children.

How much will you get?

You will receive R310 a month per child.

How will you be paid?

The South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) will pay the grant to you via one of the following methods:

  • Cash at a specific pay point on a particular day
  • An electronic deposit into your bank or Postbank account (Please just note that the bank may charge you for the service)
  • An institution acting as administrator of the grant

Note: If you are unable to collect the money yourself, you can:

  • Appoint an agent to act on your behalf (procurator) at the SASSA office, or
  • Give someone power of attorney to collect the grant on your behalf


When may the child’s grant be reviewed?

SASSA can decide if the child’s grant must be reviewed. Your income as declared when you apply for the grant will form the basis for this decision. You will be notified three months in advance of the date on which the review will take place or the date on which the life certificate (proof that you are still alive) is due.

If you receive your money through the bank, an institution or procurator, you are required to fill in a life certificate for the child at the SASSA offices every year.

When may the child’s grant be suspended?

The following may result in the suspension of the child’s grant:

  • A change in your circumstances
  • The outcome of a review
  • If you fail to co-operate when the child’s grant is reviewed
  • When you commit fraud or misrepresent the child
  • If there was a mistake when the child’s grant was approved
  • If the child is no longer in your care

When will the child’s grant lapse?

The grant will lapse:

  • If the child passes away
  • If the child is admitted to a state institution
  • If the caregiver doesn’t claim it for three consecutive months
  • If the child is absent from the country
  • At the end of the month in which the child turns 18

What you should do to apply for a social grant:

Step 1:

Go to the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) office nearest to where you live and bring the following:

  • Your 13 digit-bar-coded identity document (ID) and the child’s birth certificate. If you don’t have an ID or the child’s birth certificate:
    • You must complete an affidavit on a standard SASSA format in the presence of a Commissioner of Oaths who is not a SASSA official.
    • a sworn statement by a reputable person (e.g. councillor, traditional leader, social worker, minister of religion) who knows the applicant and child 
    • Proof that you have applied for an ID and/or birth certificate at the Department of Home Affairs
    • A temporary ID issued by the Department of Home Affairs (if applicable)
    • Baptismal certificate if available
    • Road to Health Clinic Card if available
    • School reports if available
  • Proof of any maintenance you receive for the child.
  • Proof of your earnings.
  • Your marriage certificate (if applicable).
  • If you are divorced, the court order saying that you have custody of the child.
  • If one or both parents are dead or missing, the death certificate of the deceased or proof that the parent is missing, e.g. a missing person's report from the police.

Step 2:

Complete the application form in the presence of the SASSA officer.

Note: only you as the applicant or a SASSA official may complete the application form.

You will be given a receipt. Keep it in a safe place – you will need it as proof that you applied.

What if your application is not approved?

If your application is not approved, SASSA will inform you in writing why your application was unsuccessful.

If you disagree with the decision, you can appeal to the Minister of Social Development at the national office of the Department of Social Development. You must appeal within 90 days of being notified that your application was unsuccessful.

How long does it take to get approved?

  • It may take up to three months to process your application.
  • If your grant is approved, you will be paid from the date on which you applied (see why it was important to keep that receipt safe).

How much will it cost me?

The service is free.

Which forms must I complete?

Unfortunately, application forms are not available online, but you can get them from your nearest (SASSA) office.

Who to contact for more information:

For any additional information please visit: South African Social Security Agency (SASSA)

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