WHAT IS ATTENDANCE ALLOWANCE?
Attendance allowance (AA) is a tax-free benefit for people aged 65 and over who need help to look after themselves. You do not actually have to be getting any help. It is the help you need that is relevant, not what you get. You can get AA even if you live alone, you do not need to have a carer. It is not means tested.
The two rates for 2017/18 are as follows:
Lower Rate: £55.65
Higher Rate: £83.10
DO YOU QUALIFY?
You must usually meet the following conditions:
- You are aged 65 or over;
- You pass the residence and presence test; and are not subject to immigration control.
- You satisfy one of the disability tests and have done so for the last 6 months, or
- You are terminally ill.
If you have not yet reached your 65th birthday you should claim Personal Independence Payment instead.
THE DISABILITY TEST
To qualify for the lower rate of Attendance Allowance you must satisfy one of the following conditions:
- need frequent attention throughout the day in connection with your bodily functions. Bodily functions includes eating, washing, communicating, walking indoors, drinking, sleeping, dressing, toileting, reading, hearing etc.
- need continual supervision throughout the day to avoid substantial danger to you or others.
- need prolonged or repeated attention at night in connection with your bodily functions
- need another person to be awake at night for a prolonged period or at frequent intervals to watch over you in order to avoid substantial danger to yourself or others
To qualify for the highest rate of Attendance Allowance you must satisfy one of the following conditions:
- You have at least one of the day time needs and one of the night time needs shown in the lower rate conditions.
- You are terminally ill. This means that you are suffering from a progressive disease where death can be expected within 6 months.
PERSONAL INDEPENDENCE PAYMENT OR ATTENDANCE ALLOWANCE?
You cannot claim Personal Independence Payment (PIP) for the first time after you reach your 65th birthday.
Once you are 65, you must claim Attendance Allowance instead.
If you already get the mobility component of PIP, however, you can claim PIP daily living component (at the standard or enhanced rate) rather than AA.
HOW DO I MAKE A CLAIM?
To make a claim for Attendance Allowance you should call 0345 605 6055. Alternatively you can download an application pack here.
Whilst all the information given in this document was correct at the time of going to press, DIAL Doncaster cannot be held responsible for any subsequent changes.