DWP update: State pensioners could get extra £90 a week if they meet certain criteria

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Attendance Allowance is available to state pensioners if they suffer from a serious health condition or illness. As a benefit payment, it was created to help older Britons with the extra costs that arise from having a disability. In order to qualify for Attendance Allowance, the disability of claimants must be deemed as severe enough to be eligible for support.

The DWP benefit is not means-tested which means how much someone receives is not dependent on what they earn or how much they have in savings.

Attendance Allowance is paid at two different rates – one lower and the other higher – which are awarded depending on the severity of the state pensioner’s disability.

Currently, the lower rate is £60 a week and is given if the claimant needs “frequent help or constant supervision during the day, or supervision at night”, according to the DWP.

The weekly higher rate of £89.60 is given to those who need “help or supervision throughout both day and night, or you’re terminally ill”.

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If someone were to qualify for the highest possible weekly rate, they could be in receipt of nearly an extra £90.

Overall, someone on the highest amount of Attendance Allowance could get £358.40 a month.

On top of this, state pension claimants may also be eligible for extra Pension Credit, Housing Benefit or a Council Tax Reduction if they get Attendance Allowance.

Despite this extra support being available, pensioners are at risk of losing it if they fail to complete certain tasks.

Under current rules, any changes to someone’s circumstances means they have to report them to the DWP.

When someone fails to do this it could mean claimants will be taken to court or be forced to pay a financial penalty if they provide false information or withhold any vital information.

Claimants can report changes to the DWP by calling the Attendance Allowance helpline on 0800 731 0122.

For example, if a state pensioner believes their health condition or disability has noticeably changed, they should report the change to the DWP.

Claimants of Attendance Allowance who need to go to a hospital or care home must also report this change to the DWP.

As well as this, state pension recipients who leave the country for more than four weeks or go to prison must also inform the DWP.

Any changes to someone’s name, address or bank details counts as a change of circumstances.

If someone’s doctor details or immirgration status, if they are not a British citizen, changes, the DWP must also be informed.

In a bid to promote the various disability benefits it has on offer, the DWP is urging those who may be eligible for payments, such as Attendance Allowance and Personal Independence Payment (PIP), to come forward.

Chloe Smith, the UK Government’s Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work, emphasised the importance of those with a disability reaching out to the DWP for financial support.

Ms Smith explained: “Living with a long-term illness or disability can have a profound effect on daily life, both for those with a diagnosis and those who care for them, so it’s vitally important you are receiving all the help you are entitled to.

“Millions of people already receive this support and I would urge anyone who thinks they may be eligible for extra financial help to check online.”

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