State Pension: Expert outlines criteria to qualify
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Attendance Allowance is a benefits payment which is administered by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). It is available to state pensioners who have a long-term health condition or disability which affects their day-to-day. This particular benefit payment goes towards paying for the extra costs that arise from their condition.
Recently, the DWP hiked the benefit payment rates by last year’s inflation rate, which means Attendance Allowance claimants could get over £92 a week.
As a benefit payment, Attendance Allowance is awarded at two different rates, one higher and one lower.
Currently, the higher rate is £92.40 a week while the lower weekly rate is £61.85 for those in receipt of the benefit.
How much a claimant gets in Attendance Allowance depends on the “severity” of their disability or health condition.
If someone were to claim the full amount available from the payment, their monthly allowance would be £369.60.
People on the state pension who want to apply for this helpful benefit can do so by printing out an Attendance Allowance claim form from the gov.uk website.
Completed forms must be sent to Freepost DWP Attendance Allowance for the application to be completed.
Various charities and organisations provide advice for those looking to apply for Attendance Allowance.
On the Age UK website, their guidance states: “When filling out the form, be really clear about how your illness or disability affects your life and attach any supporting information, such as GP letters, your care plans, or prescription lists.
“Once you’ve submitted your form, the Department of Work and Pensions may contact you for more information or arrange a doctor visit.
“It’s a good idea to prepare for this visit by writing things down you think the doctor should know about.
“You’ll get a letter about whether or not you’ll get Attendance Allowance, how much, and from what date.
“If you’re not happy with the decision, you can appeal.”
Those who have been informed by the DWP that they will get Attendance Allowance for a fixed period will need to renew their claim.
State pensioners will still need to meet the same eligibility criteria to get the same support again.
In its advice on this issue, Citizens Advice states: “You should get a letter and a new claim form from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
“You should get the letter about four months before your Attendance Allowance is due to end.
“Your renewal date will be on the letter – you’ll need to send the completed claim form back to the DWP before the renewal date.
“If you send the form back before the renewal date and you get Attendance Allowance again, there won’t be a break in your payments.”
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