Attendance Allowance: Age UK helps man claim benefit
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The Department for Work and Pensions DWP offers eligible people of state pension age help with personal care or supervision if they have an illness, disability or mental health condition. Successful claimants get paid every four weeks and can get up to £369.50.
As the cost of living crisis continues, and bills increase, any extra cash could be vital for families on low incomes.
Claiming Attendance Allowance could help people stay independent in their homes for longer and won’t reduce any other income they get.
The latest figures from the DWP show that in February 2022 there were 1.5 million people across the UK claiming the benefit, an increase of 24,000 from February 2021.
Many applications are turned down because people don’t mention or aren’t clear about how their illness or disability affects their lives.
READ MORE: NHS prescriptions: Britons could cut bills by up to £340 a year – are you eligible?
People should not underestimate their needs when filling in the form.
Age UK provided some “top tips” to consider when filling out an application form.
On the website, it states “it’s important to think about your specific needs”.
Questions 27-43 on the form ask about one’s care needs with personal tasks.
Britons should note down if they need help with washing, bathing and looking after their appearance, going to the toilet, organising medication, getting dressed or undressed and communicating.
Britons can contact Age UK and ask if they can help with the application.
The form is long and can take a fair bit of time to complete, so people might need to ask for an appointment if they want help.
Britons can also ask a friend, relative or carer if they would rather they help them with it.
It is important to read the notes that come with the Attendance Allowance claim form before people start filling it in.
Age UK gave their general tips which can help when filling out the Attendance Allowance form:
- Describe any accidents or falls you’ve had.
- Explain the effects of all your disabilities and health conditions, and how they interact with each other.
- List things that you struggle to do unaided, even if you’ve developed ways to cope.
- If an activity takes you much longer than it would somebody without a disability, or if it’s difficult to do safely, include this too.
- Say if you need reminding or encouragement to do things.
- Focus on how frequently you need help. For example, if you need help looking after your appearance, if you include help to check your clothes are clean after a meal, help to find a coat and matching shoes, and so on.
- Give plenty of information in your own words about your personal circumstances. Don’t worry if you need to repeat yourself.
- Don’t leave things out, even if you feel you can manage well enough.
People should explain how many times they need or get help each day for the ‘care needs’ questions.
They should also explain how many times they have difficulties.
For example, if they need help or have difficulty getting to and from the toilet, remember to write the total amount for the day.
It is not means-tested so it doesn’t matter how much income and savings someone has either.
If their claim is successful, they may also be entitled to other benefits including Pension Credit, Housing Benefit or a Council Tax Reduction.
Britons can get a claim form by calling the Attendance Allowance helpline on 0800 731 0122 or they can download a claim form from the Gov.UK website.
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