Pensioners could claim over £400 via DWP benefit – are you eligible?

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Attendance Allowance: Age UK helps man claim benefit

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Attendance Allowance is a benefit administered by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), and offers financial support for state pensioners who need need help with a physical or mental disability. It is intended to help them meet higher costs or pay for support.

From April 2023, Attendance Allowance is going up in line with September’s inflation rate of 10.1 percent.

It is paid to claimants at two different rates – a higher and lower rate.

The lower rate for the benefit is currently £61.85 a week while people on the higher rate get £92.40.

The 10.1 percent payment boost from April 2023 means people on the lower rate will see their payments increase to £68.10 while the upper rate will increase to £101.73.

Pensioners will therefore get between £247.40 and £406.92 every four weeks from next year.

Richard Lane, director of external affairs at StepChange Debt Charity, said: “With the news that inflation has now reached 11 percent, this support will soften the impact, particularly as the current cap on typical household energy bills is due to be lifted from the spring.

“The rise in the living wage will also go some way to offset soaring inflation which tends to affect those on the lowest incomes most acutely.

“While the Government’s announcements are welcome, it’s far from clear that the support offered will be enough to prevent rising financial difficulty and hardship this winter.

“Those who receive means-tested benefits are facing the biggest fall in real income and will be exposed to hardship and destitution.”

Around 1.8million people currently claim the benefit however the DWP estimates 3.4 million Britons are set to miss out on this cash boost each month as they have not claimed this benefit.

Britons can get Attendance Allowance if they’ve reached state pension age, have a physical disability (including sensory disability, a mental disability (including learning difficulties), or both and their disability is severe enough for them to need help caring for themselves or someone to supervise them for their own or someone else’s safety.

Claimants must have needed that help for at least six months (unless they are terminally ill and might have six months or less to live).

Currently, the state pension age in the UK is 66, but this could rise to 67 in upcoming years.

More than 20 million people in Britain are on some kind of benefits to help them make ends meet but despite this £15billion is still unclaimed.

As the cost of living crisis continues, Britons on low incomes are urged to claim all the benefits they are entitled to as it could be vital in the upcoming months.

Disability benefits like Attendance Allowance and PIP aren’t means tested but are awarded on how someone’s condition affects their everyday life.

Britons with 56 illnesses qualify for Attendance Allowance from the DWP and Age UK has provided some advice to help pensioners make a successful claim.

Although applicants will need evidence that their condition affects their everyday lives, they don’t need to have a carer.

Macmillan Cancer support said the benefits system in the UK can be confusing but it has volunteers on hand to help people with their applications. The charity recommends people check out an online benefit calculator like the one on the Macmillan website to see if they may be eligible to make a claim. It is encouraged people make sure they have details to hand such as income, savings and any outgoings like rent.

Britons who are provided with a terminal prognosis may be able to have their benefits fast-tracked. For more information on claiming Attendance Allowance, Britons can visit the Government website.

A Government spokesperson said: “Our priority will always be to support the most vulnerable and we recognise that people are struggling with rising prices which is why we are protecting millions of those most in need with at least £1,200 of direct help this year, including £400 towards energy costs.

“Our immediate support also includes our Energy Price Guarantee, saving around £900 for a typical household over winter and our Household Support Fund is helping people with essential costs. Meanwhile the Chancellor recently announced a further extensive cost of living package, ensuring those most in need are supported next year as well as this.”

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