Attendance Allowance: Age UK helps man claim benefit
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Attendance Allowance is paid by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and aims to help Britons over the state pension age with the costs of having a severe disability. Attendance Allowance provides up to £4,659.20 per year but 58 percent of new claims are estimated to be rejected according to research from Benefit Answers. The support is paid in two rates, the lower rate of £60 or the higher rate of £89.60 per week.
This rate paid will depend on the level of help a person will need and they must have needed help for at least six months unless they are terminally ill.
The maximum Attendance Allowance rate amounts to £358.40 a month.
Charities such as Age UK noted this is usually down to pitfalls in filling out the application form as claimants understate, misunderstand and forget to detail their conditions.
The Attendance Allowance application, otherwise known as the AA1 form, contains a number of personal questions.
The charity has compiled together the “general key things” that Britons should include in their application so it does not get turned down.
Age UK recommends that people explain the effects of all of their disabilities and health conditions, and how they interact with each other.
People should also list things that they struggle to do unaided, even if they have “developed ways” to cope.
Age UK also stated that people should not leave things out, even if they feel that they can manage well enough.
The charity added that if an activity takes a person “much longer” than it would somebody without a disability, or if it’s difficult to do safely, then this should be included.
People should also highlight if they need reminding or encouragement to do things and should focus on how frequently they need help.
For example, if a person needs help looking after their appearance, or if they need help to check if clothes are clean after a meal, help to find a coat and matching shoes, and so on.
The charity stated that people should give plenty of information “in your own words about your personal circumstances”.
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Age UK added that people should not worry if they need to repeat themselves in the application.
They also noted that people should also be clear and describe any accidents or falls they have had.
Not providing as much detail as possible can see pensioners miss out on the payments.
Before sending the form to DWP, people must also attach any supporting information including GP letters, their care plan or prescription lists.
Attendance Allowance is not means-tested and can be paid regardless of a person’s income, savings or national insurance contribution record.
As well as qualifying for Attendance Allowance, people could also be entitled to Pension Credit, Housing Benefit or a Council Tax reduction.
More than £15billion is unclaimed in benefits like Attendance Allowance, Personal Independence Payments (PIP) and Universal Credit every year.
As the cost of living continues to squeeze Briton’s finances, people are being reminded to check that they are receiving all the benefits they are entitled to.
Just because someone has been refused before doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t reapply.
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