Care Dependency Grant | Western Cape Government

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Care Dependency Grant


Boy with a disabilityIf you’re the parent, guardian, foster parent or custodian of a child younger than 18 years, who needs full-time care because of mental or physical disability, you can get a monthly payment from the government called a Care Dependency Grant. The child must need and have permanent home care. 

You must both be living in South Africa at the time of applying for the grant. You must also be looking after the child legally as a parent, guardian, foster parent or custodian, so you must either be the child's parent or have a court order which says you must look after the child. Unless you’re the foster parent of the disabled child, both you and the child must be South African citizens to get the grant. The applicant must submit a medical/assessment report confirming permanent, severe disability. 

Only people whose financial situation is below a certain level can get the grant. The test to determine this is called a means test. The means test for the care dependency grant depends on the income of the entire family. In 2019 the means test for the Care Dependency Grant said that you can get the grant if the joint income of the applicant (you), spouse and child is less than R405 600 a year. You can also get a grant if you’re a single person with an income of less than R202 800 a year. The income of foster parents will not be taken into consideration. 

You can’t get the grant if the child is in a psychiatric hospital or receives care from a treatment centre. You also can’t get the Child Support Grant and the Care Dependency Grant at the same time. You can only get one of these kinds of grants for the child. However, you can get a Care Dependency Grant as well as a Foster Child Grant for the same child. 

The amount of the grant changes every year. The grant amount for 2019 is R1 860 per child, per month.


Young child in wheelchairYou can apply for the care dependency by filling in an application form at your nearest South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) or counter service point at a Regional Office. You don’t need to pay anything to make the application. 

Your application form will be completed in the presence of an officer from SASSA. When your application is completed, you’ll be given a receipt. The receipt must be kept as proof of your application. You’ll also need to show certain documents and provide some information, including: 

  • Your South African identity document (ID), which must be bar-coded. 
  • The child's birth certificate, which must have an ID number. 

  • A medical report for the child, which must say what the child can do. This is known as a functional assessment. 

  • If you’re the foster parent of the child, the court order making you the foster parent. 

  • Proof of your marital status, such as a marriage certificate, divorce papers, or a death certificate of your spouse, or a sworn statement (affidavit) if you’ve never married. 

  • Proof of the income for you and your spouse, such as UIF card ('blue card'), wage certificate, or pension details. 

  • Proof of the income of the child. 

Other documents needed by SASSA if you’re: 

  • not the child's parent, proof that you’re the child’s primary caregiver through an affidavit from a police official, a social worker’s report, an affidavit from the biological parent or a letter from the school principal from the school attended by the child  

  • the biological parent of the child and the sole provider and caregiver, proof that you’ve tried to get the other parent to pay maintenance 

  • unemployed, proof from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) or a discharge certificate from your previous employer 

  • a refugee foster parent, refugee status permit and refugee ID  

  • the child’s foster parent, the court order placing the child in your care. 

  • If you’re too old or sick to travel to the office to apply, a family member or friend can apply on your behalf. The person should take a letter from you and/or a doctor's note saying why you can’t visit the office. 

The money can be paid out in cash on specific days at designated paypoints, or you can get the money paid electronically into your bank account. Remember that normal bank charges apply to any money going in and out of your bank account. You can decide to change the payment method at any time by filling in a form at a Welfare office, but the change will only happen a month later. 

It will take about 30 working days for your application to be processed and checked and either approved or refused. You'll get a letter saying whether your application has been approved or refused and if it’s refused the letter will tell you how to appeal. 

If it’s approved, you’ll start getting payments within 3 months. The payments will be backdated to the day you applied for the grant. You can find out what’s happened to your application and when you can expect payment by telephoning the SASSA toll-free helpline on 0800 601 011. 

The grant will be cancelled: 

  •  if you die, 

  • if the child dies,  

  • if the child is admitted into psychiatric care or rehabilitation centre or any other institution, or  

  • when the child turns 18 years old.  

Once the child turns 18 years old, the child can apply for a disability grant. Your grant will be reviewed from time to time to check this. You must inform SASSA of any changes in your or your child's circumstances. 

 General enquiries: 

Department of Social Development 
South African Social Security Agency 
Toll-free helpline: 0800 601 011 for information on: 

  • Pay-out dates. 

  • Qualifying rules for all government grants. 

  • District office addresses and contact numbers. 

  • For help with what has happened to your application. 

  • How you can also report any fraud or corruption. 

Provided by:
Government Body: (The Government of South Africa)
The content on this page was last updated on 17 April 2020