MMDF – BENEFIT INFORMATION

This guide provides a simple introduction to benefits that you and your carer may be entitled to. These are entitlements and we would encourage you to claim. Please also see the notes at the end of this guide.

We have listed the events normally held so you can decide what may be of interest for the future. Due to the impact of COVID-19 (Corona Virus), certain events quoted here may well have been suspended until further notice. Please check the current status with the relevant organisation on any events and indeed on services as well. If they have been suspended at present, please ask to be advised once the event/service is to be restarted.

Benefits Guide

For people who have been diagnosed with dementia and who are over pension age, the main benefit that is appropriate is Attendance Allowance once you have needed help for 6 months. There is a lot of information about it on the Age UK website (www.ageuk.org.uk  01296 431911) and Alzheimer’s Association website (www.alzheimers.org.uk 0333150 3456)

This does not depend on a person’s income or savings but is dependent difficulties with everyday tasks. It is paid at 2 levels –

  • If help is needed in the daytime or night-time it pays £58-70 per week
  • If help is needed in the daytime and night-time it pays £87-65 per week

The form can be obtained by phoning 0800 731 0122 and the claim will be backdated to the date of the phone call, as long as the form is returned within 6 weeks.

The form can be downloaded from the www.gov.uk website, at Age UK and the Alzheimer’s Society, but the claim will only start from the date the completed form is received in that case.

To be able to give the relevant details on the form, it is a good idea to keep a diary for at least a week to show what difficulties you have and what care and supervision you need and for how long. Don’t leave things out, even if you feel you can manage well enough.

What You Should Write About on the Form

For people who have been diagnosed with dementia and who are over pension age, the main benefit that is appropriate is Attendance Allowance once you have needed help for 6 months. There is a lot of information about it on the Age UK website (www.ageuk.org.uk  01296 431911) and Alzheimer’s Association website (www.alzheimers.org.uk 0333150 3456)

This does not depend on a person’s income or savings but is dependent difficulties with everyday tasks. It is paid at 2 levels –

  • If help is needed in the daytime or night time it pays £58-70 per week
  • If help is needed in the daytime and night time it pays £87-65 per week

The form can be obtained by phoning 0800 731 0122 and the claim will be backdated to the date of the phone call, as long as the form is returned within 6 weeks.

The form can be downloaded from the www.gov.uk website, at Age UK and the Alzheimer’s Society, but the claim will only start from the date the completed form is received in that case.

To be able to give the relevant details on the form, it is a good idea to keep a diary for at least a week to show what difficulties you have and what care and supervision you need and for how long. Don’t leave things out, even if you feel you can manage well enough.

How to Answer Questions About Personal Tasks

Questions 27-43 ask about your care needs with personal tasks. Do not leave things out, even if you feel that you can manage well enough. It is really important that you use the blank boxes to explain if you:

  • Have difficulty or need someone to help you with personal tasks – for example washing, getting out of bed or getting dressed – at least 3 times during the day
  • Have difficulty or need someone to supervise you throughout the day to make sure you stay safe – for example to stop you falling or to look after you if you have seizures or blackouts
  • Have difficulty or need someone to help you with personal tasks repeatedly (2 or more times) during the night or just once if it’s for 20 minutes or more – for example if you need help getting out of bed, going to the toilet or changing the sheets if you have an accident
  • Need someone to watch over you or supervise you during the night to make sure you are safe – they need to help you at least 3 times, or just once if it’s for 20 minutes or more, for example in case you have a fit while you’re asleep, or to stop you falling over if you have to get up

Pension Credit

If your household’s only income is your state pension and you have savings of less than £16,000 you may be entitled to Pension Credit.  Contact the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) on the Pension Credit helpline 0800 991234 to apply.

Housing Benefit & Council Tax Reduction

If you are renting, your household is on a low income and your savings are less than £16,000, you may be entitled to some Housing Benefit to help pay your rent and some reduction of your Council Tax.  Contact Buckinghamshire Council on the Wycombe number 01494 412227 to ask for help with filling in the form. They can visit you at home. Otherwise you can apply online on their website.

Anyone living on their own is entitled to a Council Tax Reduction of 25%.

There is also an entitlement to Council Tax reduction if a person with dementia is severally mentally impaired. The most common qualifying benefits to claim this are Attendance Allowance (at either the higher or lower rate), Disability Allowance, and Personal Independence allowance. You will need to contact the Council and get a GP certificate.

Under Pension Age

If you are not yet receiving your State Pension your situation is much more complicated from a benefit point of view as it depends on factors such as your National Insurance contributions and whether you are in receipt of benefits already.

For many people, the Personal Independence Allowance (PIP), which is like Attendance Allowance and does not depend on your financial situation, is the one to apply for.  You claim this by phoning the DWP on 0800 0800 917 to ask for a claim form.

It is advisable to get some help from somewhere like the local Citizens Advice Bureau on
0344 411 1444 or there is a lot of information on line at www.citizensadvice.org.uk and www.turn2us.co.uk

Please note:

  • All details above have been collated and recorded as accurately as possible and will be updated regularly, with the most recent copy available on our website at mmdf.co.uk
  • MMDF cannot endorse any service or organisation but can only signpost information.  Individuals should make their own private enquiries to validate and ascertain suitability to their own requirements. It is best to check availability, suitability, advice and any particular restrictions that may apply to anyone’s particular circumstances.

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