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Financial Help

Financial help is available to families of disabled children/adults due to the well documented evidence indicating that caring for a disabled child/adult is not only expensive but also a full time role, making it difficult to access paid work.

It is also important to see if you are eligible for the Disability Living Allowance/Personal Independence Payment or Carers Allowance, as these benefits can open the door to many other services that you may not know of or would have access to. For example, if you claim Disability Living Allowance you may also be eligible for the Blue Badge disabled parking scheme.

When applying for these benefits make sure you have supporting medical evidence, such as clinic and therapist reports.

Who to Contact About Disability and Carers Benefits

For more information about benefits you can contact your social worker or keyworker. You can also contact Full of Life for advice and support filling out benefit forms.

Full of Life Family Support Service (0-14, RBKC)

Celine Jones, Family Support Worker.

Full of Life, Kensal House Annex. 379 Ladbroke Grove, London W10 5BQ.

Tel: 0208 962 9994
Email: info@fulloflifekc.com
Service Available: Fridays (Answering machine service available).

 

Full of Life Carers’ Advocacy Service (14+ RBKC)

Samantha Peters, Carers’ Advocate.

Full of Life, Kensal House Annex. 379 Ladbroke Grove, London W10 5BQ.

Tel: 0208 962 9917
Email: advocacy@fulloflifekc.com
Service Available: Monday – Friday (Answering machine service available).

DLA, PIP and Carer’s Allowance

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is a tax-free benefit for children and adults who need help with personal care or have walking difficulties because they are physically or mentally disabled.

Who can receive Disability Living Allowance?

You can receive DLA for your child if:

  • Your child have a physical or mental disability, or both.
  • Your child’s disability is severe enough for you to need help caring for them or they have walking difficulties, or both.

 

How much will you receive?

DLA has two parts called ‘components':

  • A care component if you need help looking after yourself or supervision to keep you safe.
  • A mobility component if you can’t walk or need help getting around.
  • Some people will be entitled to receive just one component; others may get both. Both components are paid at different rates depending on how your disability affects you.

 

Effect on other benefits and entitlements

When you receive DLA it may increase the amount of other benefits or credits you’re entitled to, such as Income Support, Pension Credit, Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit, Working Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit.

However in April 2013 Personal Independence Payment replaced DLA for over 16 year olds. This is being rolled out over a number of years across the UK. Please see ‘Personal Independence Payment’ < Make this Link to Personal Independence Payment for more information.

Personal Independence Payment (16-64)

In April 2013 Personal Independence Payment replaced the Disability Living Allowance for over 16s. DLA will be phased out over a number of years and all Disability Living Allowance claimants over the age of 16 will be reassessed for Personal Independence Payment.

Personal Independence Payment is based on an assessment of individual need. The new assessment will focus on an individual’s ability to carry out a range of key activities necessary to everyday life.

Information will be gathered from the individual, from healthcare professionals and other professionals who work with and support them. Most people will also be asked to a face to face consultation with a trained independent assessor as part of the claim process. Your young person can be supported throughout this process by friends, family and advocates.

Disability Living Allowance claimants with indefinite awards will only start to be reassessed from October 2015.

Carer’s Allowance

Carer’s Allowance is a taxable benefit to help people who look after someone who is disabled. You do not have to be related to, or live with, the person that you care for. However you must report any change in your circumstances if you’re claiming or have applied for Carer’s Allowance, such as getting a job or taking a break from caring.

Who can receive Carer’s Allowance?

You may be able to receive Carer’s Allowance if you are aged 16 or over and spend at least 35 hours a week caring for a person who gets either:

  • Attendance Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance at the middle or highest rate for personal care
  • Constant Attendance Allowance at or above the normal maximum rate with an Industrial Injuries
  • Disablement Benefit
  • Constant Attendance Allowance at the basic (full day) rate with a War Disablement Pension

Who cannot receive Carer’s Allowance?

You will not be able to receive Carer’s Allowance if you are on a course of full-time education, or you are on holiday from full-time education. You also cannot earn more than £100 a week.

How much will you receive?

The weekly rate is £59.75 (May 2014). This is reduced by the amount of certain other benefits that you receive. You may have to pay tax on the amount you receive. You may be able to get an additional amount for your husband, wife or civil partner or someone living with you who looks after your dependent children.

For more information contact the Carer’s Allowance Unit on 0845 608 4321

Universal Credit

In October 2013, Universal Credit replaced all means tested benefits including Employment Support Allowance, Jobseekers Allowance, Child Tax Credit, Income Support, Housing Benefit and Working Tax Credit.

Current claimants will be moved onto Universal Credit in line with a phased approach that is expected to be complete by the end of 2017. Universal Credit will be a monthly payment incorporating all means tested benefits that you claim.

New claimants will be able to claim Universal Credit from October 2013, this will be made compulsory from April 2014.

If you have any questions about this you can contact the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) or your local Jobcentre.

Benefit Cap (16-64)

In April 2013 a limit was placed on the total amount of benefit that most people aged 16 to 64 can receive. This is called a benefit cap, which was introduced nationally at the end of September 2013.

The cap will apply to the total amount that the people in your household receive from the following benefits:

  • Bereavement Allowance
  • Carer’s Allowance
  • Child Benefit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Employment and Support Allowance (unless you get the support component)
  • Guardian’s Allowance
  • Housing Benefit
  • Incapacity Benefit
  • Income Support
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Maternity Allowance
  • Severe Disablement Allowance
  • Widowed Parent’s Allowance (or Widowed Mother’s Allowance or Widows Pension you started getting before 9 April 2001)

If you are already receiving benefits and could be affected by the cap you’ll be contacted by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). They will let you know what will happen to your benefits.

Local Support Payments

As of Monday 1st April 2013, the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea took over the delivery of emergency payments to vulnerable people. This means that Community Care Grants and Crisis Loans were replaced by Local Support Payments, taking the form of vouchers, gift cards and Post Office payment vouchers. This is part of a national government initiative to hand over the responsibility of crises loans to Local Authorities and organisations. For more information and advice about RBKC Local Support Payments, contact Full of Life on 0208 962 9994 / info@fulloflifekc.com

Tax Credits

Tax credits are payments from the government. If you’re responsible for at least one child (under the age of 16) or young person (under the age of 20 in education/training) who normally lives with you, you may qualify for Child Tax Credit. If you work, but earn low wages, you may qualify for Working Tax Credit.

Who can get tax credits?

Nine out of ten families with children get tax credits, but you don’t need to have children to qualify. You may also qualify if you are working and earning a low wage.

How much do you get?

The amount of tax credits you get depends on the following:

  • How many children you have living with you
  • Whether you work and how many hours you work
  • Your income
  • If you pay for childcare
  • If you or any child living with you has a disability
  • If you’re aged 50 plus and are coming off benefits

 

How tax credits work

If you’re married or living with a partner you’ll need to make a joint claim for tax credits. You can only make a single claim if you don’t have a partner.

The Tax Credit Office pay tax credits directly into your bank, building society, Post Office account or National Savings account if it accepts Direct Payment either weekly or every four weeks.

Who will receive the payments?

If you’re both working and you both qualify for Working Tax Credit, you can decide who’ll get the payments. If you’re claiming Child Tax Credit and you’re in a couple you need to decide which one of you is the children’s main carer. If you’re the main carer then the money will be paid to you.

Contact

Tax Credit Helpline on 0345 300 3900 or textphone 0345 300 3909