SASSA Grant: How to Apply and Who Qualifiers

It’s not difficult to apply for a SASSA grant since more than 19 million South Africans receive a monthly grant from SASSA, the South African Social Security Agency. Almost a third of the population is currently in need of assistance and receives money from the government in order to survive. These grants are designed to improve the standard of living in our society; they assist those who are most vulnerable to poverty and in need of state support.

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Applying for a grant from SASSA is relatively simple, and lately, they have made it even easier to receive certain grants by making it possible to apply for them online. Since September 2020, the government allows for beneficiaries of the Child Support GrantOlder Persons GrantFoster Child Grant and the Special Covid-19 Social Relief of Distress Grant, to apply entirely online. In a Covid-19 world, the forms for these grants can be completed electronically, and the supporting documentation can be uploaded virtually. The good news is that they plan on adding more grants to the online applications process in the near future.

STEP 1: WHO QUALIFIES?

An important question to consider when researching your eligibility for a social grant in South Africa is to know who can apply for a SASSA grant?

List 1

  • Only South African citizens, permanent residents and refugees legally registered with the Department of Home Affairs
  • Only individuals who reside in the RSA, i.e. live within the borders of South Africa.
  • Only individuals or their dependants who qualify for a social grant after the ‘means test’ has been conducted. This test evaluates the income and assets of the person applying for the social grant (and their spouses) in order to assess whether the person’s needs are below a stipulated amount. This amount varies from one grant to another but implies that you have to prove that you have insufficient means to support yourself. You basically have to prove that you have no income and that you own very little in terms of possessions such as investments, pension funds and property. 

List 2

In most cases, individuals are also required to:

  • Receive no other social grants from the government
  • Not live within a government or state-subsidised institution like a state-sponsored old age facility, prison or care facility.
  • Be within a certain age group. Children have to be younger than 18 years, pensioners over 59 years of age. 

Every applicant for a social grant has to meet all the criteria in list 1 and some of the criteria in list 2 AND the following:  

War Veteran Grant (R1880 per month)

Who can apply?

Only individual who have fought in the Second World War or the Korean War and do not receive the Older Persons Grant

Older Persons Grant (R1860 per month)

Who can apply?

Individuals that are 60 years and older

Grant in-aid (R420 per month)

Who can apply?

Individuals who RECEIVE the grant for older persons already and require full-time attendance by another person due to a physical and/or mental disability that they suffer from

Child Support Grant (R445 per month per child)

Who can apply?

The primary care giver of a child (and their spouse) that requires financial assistance to care for the child

Care Dependency Grant (R1860 per grant)

Who can apply?

Parents/carers who have the Medical Assessment Report filled in by a SASSA approved medical practitioner that confirms that the child they care for is permanently and severely disabled and is not cared for in a state-sponsored institution.

Disability Grant (R1860)

Who can apply?

Individuals between 18 and 59 years of age who have the Medical Assessment Report filled in by a SASSA registered medical practitioner confirming that the beneficiary has a permanent, severe disability that is less than 3 months old.

Foster Child Grant (R1040)

Who can apply?

Foster parents with a foster child in their care and in possession of a valid court order confirming it

Social Relief of Distress Grant 

(The amount is dependant on the results of the ‘means test’)

Who can apply?

Individuals who are temporarily in need of assistance to meet their or their family’s most basic needs for 3 months and in exceptional circumstances 6 months, and who have one of the following:

  • Are waiting for approval of another social grant 
  • Have a medical condition and are unfit to undertake remunerative work for less than 6 months
  • Do not receive maintenance from another source
  • Families with a breadwinner admitted to an institution (prison, psychiatric hospital, state-run old age institution etc)
  • Are affected by a disaster as defined by the Disaster Management Act or Fund Receiving Act 
  • Are not receiving assistance from any other organisation
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  • Will be in dire circumstances if the grant is not approved

Special Covid-19 Social Relief of Distress Grant (R350)

Who can apply?

Over 18 year-olds that do not have work, currently receive no income, unemployment benefits, student stipends from the National Student Financial Aid or any other social grants

STEP 2: HOW TO APPLY TO SASSA?

At your closest SASSA office:

Disability Grant

Grant In-aid

War Veteran’s Grant

Social Relief of Distress Grant

Care Dependency Grant

  1. Stand in the queue at your closest SASSA office
  2. Fill in the forms in the presence of a SASSA officer
  3. Have your ID documents/birth certificates or letter/affidavit certified by a Commissioner of Oaths (Police Officer at the closest police station) confirming your identity with you and have the essential forms specific to your grant like the Medical Assessment Forms etc with you. If you do not have these forms, the SASSA officer will give them to you and explain what to do with them to qualify
  4. If you are too sick/unable to go to a SASSA office yourself, you can send someone to apply on your behalf
  5. Pay no money
  6. Receive a receipt with a tracking number from the SASSA officer

Online:

Special Covid-19 Social Relief of Distress Grant

Child Support Grant

Older Persons (Pensioner) Grant

Foster Child Grants

  1. Go online to https//srd.sassa.gov.za and apply online using the forms provided and upload the documents that they ask for online
  2. Send a WhatsApp to 0820468553 and receive prompts on your cellphone
  3. Send an email to: srd@sassa.gov.za stating the grant you wish to apply for, and they will prompt you to send certain documents

Having an active email account is preferable, though a cellphone number will be sufficient to receive notifications from SASSA. 

For the Special Covid-19 Grant, you are not required to scan or upload any documents- filling in the online form is sufficient, adding your address is essential. According to the Government Gazette, the turnaround time for the application of this grant is 10 days. 

There you have it!

If your application is successful, payments will be backdated to the time of the application. Payment can be placed directly into your bank account, Postbank, or you can decide to receive cash payments at dedicated cashpoints. The Older Persons Grant is paid on the 4th, and all other grants are paid on the 6th of every month.  

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