Benefits and tax credits are payments from the government and are available to certain people on low incomes, or to meet specific needs.
They can help you if you:
• Are on a low income
• Are out of work
• Have children
• Are pregnant
• Are sick or disabled
• Have been bereaved
• Are a carer (e.g. you are looking after someone)
A summary of some of the benefits that are available, what they are and who can apply are listed below:
Attendance allowance helps with extra costs if you have a disability considered severe enough that you need someone to help look after you.
You can apply for Attendance Allowance if you are aged 65 years or over and are considered eligible.
You can find out more information (including how eligibility is determined) and apply online at Attendance Allowance page on the GOV.uk site.
A “Carer's Allowance” could be available if you are aged 16 or over and spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone.
Additionally, the person you care for has to be receiving a benefit such as Attendance Allowance (see above) or the “daily living component” of a Personal Independent Payment.
You can find out more information (including how eligibility is determined) and apply online at Carer's Allowance on the GOV.uk.
Disability Living Allowance for children (DLA)
Disability Living Allowance is for disabled children under 16 years of age. See more information and apply via the GOV.uk DLA page.
Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
The Employment and Support Allowance offers you financial support if you have an illness or a disability which means you are not able to work.
Alternatively, it is available to be used to arrange personalised help so that you can work if you’re able to.
You can find out more information (including how eligibility is determined) and apply online at the ESA page on the GOV.uk site.
Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
Replacing the disability living allowance, a Personal Independence Payment can help to pay towards some of the extra costs caused by a disability or long-term ill health.
You can find out more information (including how eligibility is determined) and apply online at the PIP page on the GOV.uk.
If you would like some further information about benefits, you can contact your local Citizens Advice or visit them online.
For more information please see Citizen's advice on benefits.
If you are experiencing financial difficulty the most important thing is to get help straight away. No matter how tough the situation may seem, there are ways to manage your finances.
Managing your money
Would you like to take control of your finances, but are not sure of where to start?
The Money Advice Service is a free and impartial money advice, set up by government offering:
• Advice and guides to help improve your finances
• Tools and calculators to help keep track and plan ahead
• Support over the phone and online
Visit The Money Advice Service website for more information.
The government website GOV.UK has lots of information, including benefit calculators, on a range of benefits and credits you may be entitled to.
Citizens Advice Bureau
Advice and support including welfare benefits adviceAddress: Civic 9