Martin Lewis reveals who is eligible for Attendance Allowance
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Attendance Allowance is a benefit paid by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and is given to Britons over the state pension age who suffer from a disability or an illness that makes it harder for them to look after themselves. The benefit is paid at two different rates every four weeks and the amount someone gets is dependent on the level of care they need. Pensioners could receive £61.85 if they need help during the day or at night and if someone needs help during both the day and night they could receive £92.40.
According to the DWP, Attendance Allowance is one of the most underclaimed benefits with many people mistakenly believing they will not qualify for the additional benefit or are put off by the claims process.
The DWP has urged pensioners to check if they can claim the support during the cost of living crisis, as if eligible they could receive between £247.40 and £369.60 each payment period.
This equates to between an extra £3,000 to £4,000 plus each year.
According to the DWP, around 3.4 million pensioners are estimated to be eligible for Attendance Allowance.
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To be eligible, people will need to be over the state pension age and must have “had care or supervision needs” because of their disability or illness for at least six months before they can get Attendance Allowance.
The disability or illness of a person can be both physical or mental and people also do not need to have a carer to qualify for the benefit.
Britons who suffer from a terminal condition will be eligible to receive the higher rate.
There is also a quicker application process for people who aren’t expected to live more than six months.
Attendance Allowance is not a means-tested benefit, so people who are working can still claim it.
It also means that it doesn’t matter how much a person has in savings as it will not affect what they are entitled to.
The application process for Attendance Allowance has been described by disability charities to be “long” and “overcomplicated”.
The process requires people to answer personal questions which many may not want to do or could find emotionally draining.
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However, charities including Citizens Advice and Age UK, have urged Britons to claim if they are eligible.
Both of these charities, as well as many others, provide support and help to individuals when filling out the forms.
The Attendance Allowance application, otherwise known as the AA1 form and Age UK recommends people explain the effects of all of their disabilities and health conditions, and how they interact with each other.
People should also list things that they struggle to do unaided, even if they have “developed ways” to cope.
Age UK also stated people should not leave things out, even if they feel that they can manage well enough.
The charity stated individuals should give plenty of information “in your own words about your personal circumstances”.
Before sending the form to DWP, people must also attach any supporting information including GP letters, their care plan or prescription lists.
To apply, Britons will need to download the attendance allowance form on the GOV.UK website.
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