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Financial help if you are disabled


These benefits are managed and paid by central government.

For more information please use the links below that take you to the relevant pages on GOV.UK.

Disability Living Allowance for Children

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children may help with the extra costs of looking after a child who:

  • Is under 16
  • Has difficulties walking or needs more looking after than a child of the same age who doesn’t have a disability

They will need to meet all the eligibility requirements.

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children is a tax-free benefit made up of 2 components (parts). The child might qualify for one or both components.

Care component

The rate the child gets depends on the level of looking after they need, for example:

  • Lowest rate - help for some of the day or night
  • Middle rate - frequent help or constant supervision during the day, supervision at night or someone to help while they’re on dialysis
  • Highest rate - help or supervision throughout both day and night, or they’re terminally ill.

Mobility component

The rate the child gets depends on the level of help they need getting about, for example:

  • Lowest rate - they can walk but need help and or supervision when outdoors
  • Highest rate - they can’t walk, can only walk a short distance without severe discomfort, could become very ill if they try to walk or they’re blind, severely sight impaired.

The child may need an assessment to work out what help they need.

Disability Living Allowance for Adults

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is being replaced by Personal Independence Payment (PIP) for disabled people.

You can only apply for DLA if you’re under 16 (external link). You can apply for:

  • PIP (external link) if you’re aged 16 or over and have not reached State Pension age.
  • Attendance Allowance (external link) if you’re State Pension age (external link) or older and do not get DLA

If you already get DLA, your claim might end. You’ll get a letter telling you when this will happen and how you can apply for PIP.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

The Personal Independence Payment (external link) is for disabled people aged 16 to 64 and is replacing Disability Living Allowance.

Attendance Allowance

You could get £58.70 or £87.65 a week to help with personal care because you’re physically or mentally disabled and you’re aged 65 or over.

This is called Attendance Allowance. It’s paid at 2 different rates and how much you get depends on the level of care that you need because of your disability.

The other benefits you get can increase if you get Attendance Allowance (external link).

Carer’s Allowance

Carer’s Allowance (external link) is £66.15 a week to help you look after someone with substantial caring needs.

You don’t have to be related to, or live with, the person you care for.

You must be 16 or over and spend at least 35 hours a week caring for them.

Carer’s Allowance can affect the other benefits that you and the person you care for get (external link). You have to pay tax on it if your income is over the Personal Allowance (external link).

Employment and Support Allowance

If you’re ill or disabled, Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) offers you:

  • Financial support (external link) if you’re unable to work
  • Personalised help so that you can work if you’re able to

You can apply for ESA (external link) if you’re employed, self-employed or unemployed.

You might be transferred to ESA (external link) if you’ve been claiming other benefits like Income Support or Incapacity Benefit.

Work Capability Assessment

You must go to a Work Capability Assessment while your ESA claim is being assessed. This is to see to what extent your illness or disability affects your ability to work.

You’ll then be placed in 1 of 2 groups if you’re entitled to ESA:

  • Work-related activity group, where you’ll have regular interviews with an adviser
  • Support group, where you don’t have interviews

What you’ll get

How much ESA you get depends on:

  • Your circumstances for example your income
  • The type of ESA (external link) you qualify for
  • Where you are in the assessment process

Use a benefits calculator (external link) to work out how much you can get.

Help with health costs

Most National Health Service (NHS) treatment is free but there can be charges for some things. You may be able to get help with NHS health costs if for example you're on a low income.

Incapacity Benefit

Incapacity Benefit is being replaced with Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

You’ll be reassessed if you’re already claiming Incapacity Benefit, to decide if you’re capable of work or eligible for ESA. You won’t be reassessed if you’re close to State Pension age (external link).

Disability Benefits Centre

Get advice or information about a claim you’ve already made for Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance or Personal Independence Payment.

Last Updated: 19/01/2021
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