Understanding what benefits and entitlements we are entitled to as we get older can be a confusing and daunting task. With so many different options available, it can be difficult to know where to start and what you may be eligible for.
It’s important to know that there are many benefits and entitlements available for the elderly in the UK that are easy to apply for and can provide much-needed financial support. At The Good Care Group, we understand how important it is to ensure that our clients receive the best possible care, and that includes helping them access any benefits they are entitled to.
We believe that our clients should have access to every resource available to them to ensure they can live as comfortably and independently as possible. Here we provide a list of some of the benefits and entitlements available to elderly people and how to apply for them. Many of these benefits can help cover the costs of receiving outstanding-quality live-in care from The Good Care Group.
What benefits can an elderly person claim?
- Attendance allowance
- Christmas bonus
- Constant attendance allowance
- Pension credit
- TV licence
- Winter fuel payment
- Council tax reduction
- Bereavement support payment
- Free eye tests and dental care
- Hospital travel costs
- Blue Badge
Attendance Allowance is a payment available to people who are over the state pension age and need significant help with daily living tasks such as washing, dressing or eating due to a serious illness or disability.
How much is it?
Higher rate: £101.75 a week
Lower rate: £68.10 a week.
To be eligible for Attendance Allowance, you must meet the following criteria:
- Be of state pension age
- Have a disability that requires help with self-care due to physical or mental impairment, including dementia
- Have required the necessary level of ‘care and supervision’ for at least six months, prior to claiming (unless terminally ill)
- You don’t have to be receiving care already, as long as you would benefit from it.
You will not be eligible if:
- You already receive the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) or Disability Living Allowance.
- You are below the state pension age.
How to claim:
Download and print the claim form to send by post.
Alternatively, you can fill out an interactive AA1 form online (but you will still need to print the completed form to sign and post).
You can call the Attendance Allowance helpline to request a claim form or to get help and information: 0800 731 0122
The Christmas Bonus is a special one-time payment of £10 that is tax-free and paid to those who receive certain benefits during the qualifying week, usually the first full week of December. This bonus is intended to help people on lower incomes with the additional costs associated with the holiday season.
The good news is that you do not need to apply for the Christmas Bonus as it is paid automatically to those who are eligible. This means that if you receive any of the qualifying benefits during the qualifying week, you should receive the payment without having to do anything.
Not everyone who receives benefits is eligible for the Christmas Bonus. To qualify, you must be receiving certain benefits on a particular week, and these benefits include Pension Credit, Disability Living Allowance, State Pension, Attendance Allowance, and more. It’s best to check with your local authority to see if you are eligible.
Constant Attendance Allowance
Constant Attendance Allowance (CAA) is a benefit available to individuals who are ill or disabled due to specific circumstances such as workplace accidents or military service. In order to qualify, you must receive either an Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit or a War Disablement Pension and you must require constant care and attention as a result of your injury or disability.
CAA is paid at four different rates depending on the nature of your disability and how much care you need. As of the 2023-24 tax year, the maximum amount you can receive is £166.20 per week.
If you believe you may be eligible for CAA, you can make a claim by visiting GOV.UK. The application process may require evidence of your injury or disability, as well as medical documentation to support your claim. If you need help filling out the claim form you can call the Attendance Allowance helpline on 0800 731 0122.
Council Tax Reduction
Council Tax Reduction is a means-tested benefit that can help you pay your council tax if you’re on a low income or have no income at all. The amount of reduction you receive will depend on your income, savings, and household size, as well as the amount of council tax you need to pay.
If you’re living with dementia or caring for someone with dementia, you may be eligible for additional support with your council tax. Some people with severe cognitive impairments, including dementia, may be entitled to a full exemption from council tax. In addition, if you’re a carer, you may be entitled to a discount on your council tax bill.
To apply for Council Tax Reduction, you will need to contact your local council and provide information on your income and living situation. The rules for Council Tax Reduction will vary depending on where you live, so it’s best to check what support is available in your area.
Pension Credit is a means-tested benefit designed to provide financial assistance to individuals on a low income. The benefit is made up of two parts: Guarantee Credit and Savings Credit. Guarantee Credit provides a minimum level of income for people who have reached the qualifying age for State Pension. The Savings Credit is an additional payment for those who have saved towards their retirement.
Not everyone who is eligible for Pension Credit claims it, with around a third of people failing to do so according to the government. The benefit can provide an average of around £3,300 per year to those who claim it, so it’s important to check if you’re eligible and make a claim if you are.
To qualify for Pension Credit, you must have reached State Pension age and have a low income or no income at all. You can still apply for Pension Credit even if you own your own home or have savings.
You can apply online through the GOV.UK website. The application requires information about your income, savings, and living arrangements, so try to have this information ready when you apply.
If you’re over 75 and receive Pension Credit, you may be able to claim a free TV licence for your household. The licence covers everyone living at your address. Learn more about getting a free or discounted TV licence.
Winter Fuel Payment
The Winter Fuel Payment is a tax-free payment that can help you pay for your heating bills during the winter months. If you receive State Pension or Pension Credit, you could receive between £250 and £600. You don’t need to apply for it if you’re eligible, as the payment will be sent to you automatically.
Bereavement Support Payment
Widowers who are under the state pension age may be eligible for Bereavement Support Payment if they were living in the UK or a country that pays bereavement benefits. Your partner must have either paid National Insurance contributions for at least 25 weeks in one tax year since 6 April 1975 or died as a result of an accident at work or a disease caused by work.
The amount you receive depends on your circumstances, such as whether you have children, and ranges from a one-off payment of £2,500 to up to £9,800 over 18 months. To find out more or to apply, visit the GOV.UK website.
Free eye tests and dental care
If you’re aged 60 or over, you may be entitled to free NHS eye tests and free prescriptions.
For dental care, if you’re over 60 and claiming certain benefits, you may be eligible for free dental treatment. You may also be entitled to help with the cost of travelling to receive NHS dental care and the cost of glasses or travel to the hospital.
Additionally, the NHS Low Income Scheme can help with dental charges and the cost of travelling to receive NHS treatment. To find out if you’re eligible for help with dental costs or to apply for the NHS Low Income Scheme, visit the NHS website.
Hospital travel costs
The Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme (HTCS) provides help with travel costs for people on a low income who need to travel to receive NHS healthcare. If you’re eligible, the scheme can cover the cost of your travel to and from the hospital, as well as any other costs such as unavoidable car parking and toll charges.
To apply, you can ask your healthcare provider who is treating you for a copy of the form or download it from the NHS website.
The Blue Badge scheme provides parking concessions for people with disabilities or health conditions that affect their mobility. If you have difficulty walking or have a severe disability, you may be eligible for a Blue Badge. The badge allows you to park closer to your destination, in designated parking spaces, and in some cases, for free.
To apply, visit this website and complete the online application form.
Can I claim Personal Independence Payment (PIP)?
Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is a benefit for people aged 16 to state pension age who have a long-term illness, disability or mental health condition that affects their ability to carry out daily living activities. If you are over state pension age, you cannot claim PIP, but you may be able to claim Attendance Allowance instead.
To claim PIP, you can start the process by calling the new ‘PIP claims phoneline’ on 0800 917 2222. You can start a claim by post instead, but it takes longer to get a decision.
It’s important to note that the process can take several weeks or even months, so it’s best to start the process as soon as possible.
Can I claim Disability Living Allowance (DLA)?
Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is a benefit for people under state pension age who have care or mobility needs as a result of a long-term illness or disability. It is intended to help with extra costs related to personal care and mobility.
If you are over state pension age, you cannot claim DLA, but you may be able to claim Attendance Allowance instead.
The DLA is currently being phased out and PIP is gradually replacing DLA for people of working age (16 to 64) who are already receiving it. If you already get DLA, your claim might end. You will be notified by letter if this happens and how you can apply for PIP or Adult Disability Payment.
Award-winning Elderly Care at Home
If you’re looking for high-quality elderly care at home, consider award-winning live-in care by The Good Care Group. Our team of highly trained carers provide personalised care and support for your loved ones, ensuring that they receive the best possible care in the comfort of their own home.
Contact our friendly team to learn more about our elderly live-in care at home.