Support for children from lower-income families

Social Allowance in Flanders

The Social Allowance was created to give children from low-income families every opportunity to develop. The amount that you receive depends on your family income and size.
What is the Social Allowance in Flanders?

What is the Social Allowance in Flanders?

The Social Allowance was designed to give children from lower-income families every opportunity to develop. 

  • Your Social Allowance entitlement is based on your family size and income.
  • If you are entitled to the Social Allowance, you will receive it automatically. Therefore, you do not need to submit an application.
  • The Social Allowance payment amount varies between 5,52 euros and 109,18 euros per child per month.

How much is the Social Allowance?

Your Social Allowance payment amount is based on your income and the number of children in your family. Certain income thresholds apply to your family income. In addition to your gross taxable income (or net taxable income for the self-employed), this also includes maintenance payments, cadastral income and income replacement allowances.

Family Size

Income threshold

Monthly Allowance

1 or 2 children

< 32.882,77 Euros

54,12 Euros per child

> 2 children

< 32.882,77 Euros

86,59 Euros per child

> 2 children

32.882,77 Euros - 64.945,93 Euros

64,94 Euros per child

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A brief history of the Social Allowance.

In the past, if you were unemployed or incapacitated for work, or a single-parent family, then you were entitled to a Social Allowance.

As of 1/1/2019 and the introduction of the Growth Package, your entitlement to this allowance is no longer linked to your employment status and is now based solely on your family income and size, regardless of whether you are a single parent or not.

This new regulation applies to children born both prior to and after 1 January 2019. An important side note: children born prior to 1 January 2019 will continue to receive the former Child Benefit legislation amounts. And families with an annual income of between 32.882,77 euros and 64.945,93

euros are only entitled to an allowance if a third or subsequent qualifying child is added to the family from 01/01/2019 (*)

What else you want to know about the Social Allowance

What else you want to know about the Social Allowance

How is your Social Allowance entitlement evaluated?

Your Social Allowance entitlement is calculated automatically based on your family circumstances, the income specified on your tax return and your property ownership status. Your Social Allowance entitlement is reviewed on an annual basis, for the period from 1 October to 30 September of the following year.

We automatically receive your income details from the FPS Finance via your tax return. We always base this assessment on your tax return from 2 years ago.

Example: We investigate your Social Allowance entitlement for the period of 1 October 2021 to 30 September 2022 based on the income specified on your tax return for the 2019 tax year.

Your Social Allowance is therefore always awarded on a provisional basis. In this same example, we’ll review the income specified on the 2021 tax year in 2023. At that point, we can evaluate whether the Social Allowance was awarded correctly. The opposite can also apply:

Example: If we deduce that the income specified on your 2019 tax return was too high to entitle you to a Social Allowance, but in 2023 we see that your actual 2021 income was below the permitted threshold amount, then, at that point in time, we can pay your Social Allowance for the period from 1 October 2021 to 30 September 2022.

What if my current income differs from my income from 2 years ago?

Since we base our calculations on your income from 2 years ago, the Social Allowance is always awarded on a provisional basis. We automatically receive this information from the FPS Finance via your tax return.

It could be that your income from 2 years ago was higher than the Social Allowance entitlement threshold amount. In that case, we’ll be unable to pay a provisional Social Allowance.

Example: We investigate your Social Allowance entitlement for the period of 1 October 2021 to 30 September 2022 based on the income specified on your tax return for the 2019 tax year. If your income for the 2019 tax year was too high, then we’ll be unable to pay a provisional Social Allowance. In 2023, we’ll be able to view your 2021 tax return. At that point, we’ll check whether a supplementary Social Allowance can be paid or not, based on your actual 2021 income.

If you already know that your current income is less than your income from 2 years ago, you can:

  • Wait for KidsLife to automatically review your Social Allowance entitlement in 2 years’ time
  • Submit your current income manually via the application form. To do so, please contact your KidsLife adviser or download the application form

Why am I no longer entitled to a Social Allowance when I was in the past?

There are various reasons why you may no longer be entitled to the Social Allowance:

  • Change in your family circumstances.

Example: Lieve receives Child Benefit and a Social Allowance for her 2 children based on her low income. Her partner Peter moves in with her on 12 March. From 1 April, Peter’s income is also included in the Social Allowance entitlement calculation. Lieve and Peter’s combined income is higher than the permitted threshold amount.

  • Your income has increased and is higher than the permitted threshold amount.
  • New method of calculation: unlike the former Child Benefit legislation that applied prior to January 2019, maintenance payments, living wages, income replacement allowances and some forms of cadastral income are now also included in the calculation of your income.
  • The cadastral income test. We factor in your cadastral income when calculating your allowance. We do this if you own property and/or land that you do not reside in/on or do not utilise in a professional capacity. If your cadastral income represents an excessive proportion of your total income, then you’re not entitled to a Social Allowance.

Why am I receiving less Social Allowance than before?

  • Change in the number of children in your family

Example: Ben and Mona have 2 children. Gaston was born in 2019 and Lina in 2021. Ben and Mona’s combined income is less than 32.882,77 euros per annum and they consequently receive a Social Allowance of 86,59 euros per child. On 5 April 2021, Gaston goes to live with his grandparents. Lina is now the only child in Ben and Mona’s family and will consequently be entitled to a Social Allowance of 54,12 euros from 1 May 2021.

  • Other income thresholds.

The new family income calculation may result in you falling into a different category. You may receive less or more Social Allowance as a result.

Example: Emelie has 3 children from a previous relationship. Her youngest child Jules was born in 2019. Based on her income (which is less than 32.882,77 euros, she is entitled to a Social Allowance for her 3 children. Her new partner Suzanne moves in with her on 6 May 2021. From 1 June 2021, Suzanne’s income will also be included in the calculation. Emelie and Suzanne’s combined income is between 32.882,77 euros and 64.945,93 euros. The Social Allowance that Emelie receives for Jules consequently decreases from 86,59 euros to 64,94 euros.

Have a question about your personal circumstances? Then please contact your KidsLife adviser.

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The basic amount: monthly Child Benefit amounts per child.

The basic amount: monthly Child Benefit amounts per child.

Children who are entitled to the Growth Package or Child Benefit receive a basic monthly amount. This basic amount can be topped up with supplementary allowances or premiums. Your basic amount is based on a number of conditions and may vary per child. 
The basic amount: monthly Child Benefit amounts per child.
School allowance

School allowance

In certain circumstances children who attend pre-, primary or secondary school are entitled to the Study Allowance. This allowance is also referred to as the selective participation allowance and is intended for families on low incomes. You receive this in addition to the school premium or school bonus that’s paid out in August. 
School allowance

Being a single parent doesn’t automatically entitle you to a social allowance

Your family income must not exceed a certain threshold to be eligible to receive this. The fact that you are a single or divorced parent likely has an influence on your family income. This may make you eligible. 

The threshold amounts and the composition of this Social Allowance depend on where you and your children live: Flanders, Brussels or Wallonia

KidsLife automatically pays your Social Allowance if you are entitled to it! We do this following receipt of your tax return. We always receive this 2 years after the income year. 

Example:
We (re)evaluate your Social Allowance for 2019 in 2021. We receive confirmation of your 2019 income from the federal government in 2021.  

Eligible for this allowance and prefer not to wait 2 years? Contact your KidsLife adviser to submit an application. 

View all of the conditions pertaining to the Social Allowance here

You are entitled to a Social Allowance if your gross family income is less than a certain threshold. We receive an overview of your total family income from the FPS Finance, based on your tax return.
Your definitive data is only available 2 years later.
For example, your 2019 income will only be available in 2021.

Thus it is only possible to make a (definitive) validation of your Social Allowance entitlement 2 years after the date. 

Already received a Social Allowance payment? Then we will check whether you have received this correctly.
 
Not yet received a Social Allowance payment? Then we will examine your eligibility and potentially pay the supplement retroactively. 

Check your eligibility for the Social Allowance here. 

 

KidsLife assists low-income families by paying them a supplementary allowance: the Social Allowance
The Social Allowance is entirely dependent on your personal situation: your place of residence, your income and your family circumstances.

View all of the conditions that apply to your Social Allowance here

 

If your family income changes, this can affect your entitlement to the social allowance and the selective participation allowance (school allowance). Your entitlement is automatically investigated based on your income from 2 years ago (via your tax return). Suddenly earning significantly more and receiving a social allowance from KidsLife?
 Then please notify us so that we can terminate your social allowance and consequently prevent a potential clawback payment.

Now earning significantly less and not currently receiving a social allowance from KidsLife? Then contact us so that we can send you the relevant form. Please complete this form specifying your income and return it to us, together with the necessary supporting documents.

 

Your family may be entitled to supplementary child benefit in addition to the standard Growth Package and Child Benefit amounts (to which every child is entitled). You can view all types of supplementary child benefit here.

In many cases you needn’t submit a request for supplementary child benefit and we automatically ensure that you receive the correct entitlement. However, you may have to submit a request to KidsLife in certain situations.  Believe that you qualify for an allowance, but aren’t currently receiving it? Then please contact your KidsLife adviser, who’ll gladly assist.

Questions about your Social Supplement?

Do you still have questions about your Social Supplement? Our KidsLife advisers are ready to help you. 

Contact your KidsLife advisor