Many people are unaware of all the helpful benefits and entitlements available to older adults and people with disabilities in the UK. In fact, billions of pounds of benefits go uncollected each year. Many of these benefits and entitlements could be applied to help people receive the care they need, even in their own homes.
Here are some benefits and entitlements for the elderly that you or someone you know may be eligible for.
Help Covering the Costs of Care and Bereavement
The Attendance Allowance is a benefit aimed at providing support to individuals who require help with personal care due to age, disability or illness. It’s intended to help those who are aged 65 and older to maintain their independence and quality of life.
This tax-free benefit doesn’t depend on your income or savings and is intended to assist with the extra costs associated with personal care needs. To learn more about the Attendance Allowance, visit the official UK Government page.
The Carer’s Allowance is intended to address the financial impact caregiving duties can have on entire families. You could receive £76.75 a week if you care for someone at least 35 hours a week and they get certain benefits. You do not have to be related to this person. Learn more about claiming the Carer’s Allowance.
There are a range of health benefits available depending on your age, location and income. These benefits include free prescriptions, free eye tests, dental care and other concessions. You can easily check your eligibility for these benefits through this useful benefits calculator on GOV.UK.
Disability Living Allowance
The Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is a tax-free benefit designed to assist people with mobility and care-related expenses due to disabilities. Currently, the Government is in the process of replacing this benefit for those aged 16 and older. If you are under 16 or born before 8 April 1948 and are already receiving DLA, you can continue to do so. However, if you’re 16 or older, you cannot apply for DLA anymore.
Instead, if you’re between 16 and State Pension age, you should apply for Personal Independence Payment (PIP). If you’ve reached the State Pension age, the appropriate benefit to apply for is Attendance Allowance.
Should your circumstances change—such as a hospital stay or a move to a care home lasting over four weeks, or changes to your name, address, or bank details—it’s crucial to inform the Disability Service Centre if you’re receiving DLA. This ensures that you comply with the necessary procedures.
Bereavement Support Payment
Coping with the loss of a loved one is emotionally challenging and the Bereavement Support Payment is intended to provide crucial financial support during this difficult time. These benefits are designed to help widowed individuals manage their financial commitments and adjust to the changes that come with losing a partner.
The Bereavement Support Payment offers financial assistance to those who have lost a spouse or civil partner. This support is available to individuals below the State Pension age and is divided into an initial lump sum followed by monthly payments. It is not means-tested meaning your financial situation will not be used to consider your eligibility.
Help with Bills & Expenses
As the colder months approach, heating benefits become a vital lifeline for many elderly people. These benefits are designed to help older adults with the costs of keeping their homes warm during the winter. There are two benefits available: the Cold Weather Payment and the Winter Fuel Payment.
If the average daily temperature is recorded as 0°C or below for seven days in a row, you may be entitled to £25 from the Government. This is called the Cold Weather Payment. You will likely be eligible if you already claim other income-related benefits, such as Income Support, Universal Credit, or Pension Credit.
The Winter Fuel Payment is a tax-free payment of £250 to £600 offered to individuals to help them cover their heating expenses. You will automatically receive this payment if you receive a State Pension or Pension Credit. You may be eligible for the Winter Fuel Payment if you receive other social security benefits, but not if you receive the Housing Benefit, Council Tax Reduction, Child Benefit, or Universal Credit.
There are also other small requirements, so you will have to carefully review the information provided on the GOV.UK website.
Public Transport Concessions
If you are 60 years or older, you might be eligible for public transport concessions. These discounts range from discounts on your rail journeys to a free bus pass.
Once you reach the state pension age which is 66 for both men and women, you can apply for an older person’s bus pass.
If you are 60 years or older and living in London, you can get a 60+ London Oyster photocard for free travel on buses, trains and other modes of transport in and around London – but only in London.
Individual transport providers may always provide their own discounts. For instance, National Express offers CoachCards, which are discounted travel cards for older people or people with disabilities.
Free or Discounted TV Licence
If you’re 75 or over and you get Pension Credit, you can get a free TV licence. If you’re blind or in residential care, you can get a discounted TV licence. Learn more on GOV.UK.
Council Tax Reduction
Council Tax is a significant expense for homeowners, and for many elderly living on a fixed income, it can become a challenge to manage. The Council Tax Reduction is designed to alleviate this financial burden by assisting people with low income or on benefits with their council tax payments.
Help With Urgent Or One-Off Expenses
Emergencies and unexpected expenses can arise at any time. The Government offers assistance for urgent or one-off expenses through programs like the Discretionary Housing Payment and the Local Welfare Provision. The Discretionary Housing Payment provides support with housing costs while the Local Welfare Provision provides emergency support for unexpected expenses. Contact your local council to learn more.
Government Help For Energy Bills
You may be eligible for support to help pay your heating bills or top up your prepayment metre. There are many different benefits available, so it’s important to have a careful look through the GOV.UK website.
Employment and Support Allowance
You may be eligible for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) if you have a disability or health condition that affects how much you can work. The ESA can provide both financial support if you are unable to work or support getting back to work if you can do so.
The Pension Credit helps people over the State Pension age who are living on a low income. You may still be able to get the Pension Credit if you have some income, savings or assets. The Pension Credit has two parts, the Guarantee Credit and the Savings Credit, and you are eligible for either or both.
Learn more about the Pension Credit from GOV.UK.
Personal Independence Payment
Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is a Government benefit that provides financial support to people with disabilities or long-term health conditions. PIP is intended to help with the extra costs associated with daily living and mobility needs. You can get PIP even if you are working, have savings or assets, or are claiming other benefits.
Income support was extra money that was allocated to helping people with lower incomes cover the costs of daily living. You can no longer claim income support. You can apply for Universal Credit instead.
The Universal Credit is replacing 6 other benefits with a single monthly payment if you’re out of work or on a low income. It’s a benefit intended to help people with the costs of living. To claim you must be at least 18 years old, under the Stage Pension age, living in the UK and have less than $16,000 in income and benefits. Learn more.
You can apply for the Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) to help you when you’re looking for work. You will need to check if you’re eligible, go to an interview at your local Jobcentre Plus office, and keep to your agreement to look for work. There’s a maximum payment you can receive but the exact amount you will be paid depends on your age. People 25 or over are entitled to £84.80 a week.
Have You Considered Home Care?
At Prestige Nursing & Care, we understand the importance of making informed decisions about home care. With a legacy spanning over 75 years, we are dedicated to helping families across the country find the right solutions for their elderly loved ones.
If you’re exploring options for home care that prioritise comfort, safety, and well-being, we are here to help you and your family every step of the way. Contact our friendly team to learn how home care can improve the quality of your life.