1. Is there a maximum annual income to be entitled to Children’s Allowance?
To be entitled for Children’s Allowance the total reckonable income for the year indicated on application must not exceed €24,833. The amount paid in respect of social security contributions is deducted from the gross income declared. When the above mentioned amount is exceeded, Children’s Allowance entitlement will be paid at a minimum rate of €8.66 per child per week.
2. Once the application has been accepted, does the applicant have to re-apply for the benefit?
No. One will need to apply for Children's Allowance only if there are changes in circumstances as indicated in question no. 5. Children’s Allowance entitlement will then be reassessed and if awarded will be issued for 52 weeks and paid every thirteen weeks in advance.
3. How is the Children’s Allowance rate calculated?
The allowance paid is a percentage calculated on the difference between €24,833 and the gross income including bank interests and social security benefits for the year indicated on application less the social security contributions paid. When the total income is less than €5,568, the applicant will be entitled for the maximum rate of Allowance. However, if the resultant difference between €24,833 and the gross income is more than €7,500, rate payable will be not less than €8.66 per child per week equivalent to €450 per year for each child.
4. What are the percentages applied?
The percentages applied are: 6% for each child and €8.66 for 16 to 21 year olds registering for work for the first time or students not receiving stipends.
5. What happens when the applicant becomes unemployed or there is a change in his/her circumstances?
When the applicant and / or spouse/partner becomes unemployed, is separated, acquires or loses custody of children, or avails himself / herself of unpaid leave, becomes a widow / widower, marries or starts living with a partner, he / she should inform the Department of Social Security so that his / her claim will be reassessed on the basis of his / her current circumstances. Not to lose any benefit, the applicant must make sure that this information has been received by the Department within six months from date of change of circumstance.
6. Are there instances where Children’s Allowance is paid after the child attains the age of sixteen?
Allowance will continue being paid for those children between the age of 16 and 21 who are still attending full time education and receiving no stipends or maintenance grants. It is also paid when the said child is registering to seek his / her first employment under Part 1 of the Register of Employment. In this case, the rate payable is €8.66 for each child.
7. Are disabled children entitled to Children’s Allowance?
Disabled children are entitled to Children’s Allowance and also to a Disabled Child Allowance. A claimant has to submit an application in order to become eligible for Disabled Child Allowance. This application can be obtained from any District Office of the Department of Social Security or downloaded from: www.socialsecurity.gov.mt. The application has to be certified by a medical practitioner. The Department will then refer the application to a medical panel, which establishes if the child is eligible to the Disabled Child Allowance or not. In both cases the claimant is informed of the decision.
Disabled Child Allowance entitlement is no longer subject to a means test. To this end, there is no need to submit an income declaration to receive this allowance. The Disabled Child Allowance rate is €20.00 per week.
8. May one be entitled for both Children’s Allowance and Supplementary Allowance?
No. When a family is receiving Children’s Allowance they will not be entitled for Supplementary Allowance.