MSPs have unanimously backed a Bill which sets out rules for dealing with fraud in Scottish benefit payments.
The wide-ranging Social Security Administration and Tribunal Membership (Scotland) Bill makes a number of administrative changes.
It allows investigations to be carried out to determine if offences relating to “top-up” benefits such as the forthcoming Scottish Child Payment have been committed.
It also expands the situations where one person can apply for and receive benefits on behalf of another.
During a vote in the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday, 109 votes were recorded in favour of the Bill and none against.
Social Security Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville said applications for Universal Credit had increased during the pandemic.
Ms Somerville said: “This tells us that this support is needed now more than ever.
“That’s why I’m proud we are using our social security powers available to us to benefit children and families across Scotland at a time when financial security is uncertain and some people are struggling and facing financial hardship.
“It is our intention to open up the Scottish Child Payment for applications in November, with the first payments being made in February.”