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Disability Living Allowance is for people under 65 who have difficulty walking or looking after themselves (or both).
Disability Living Allowance is for people under 65 who have difficulty walking or looking after themselves (or both). You may also be eligible if you need someone to look out for you, for example, because you have a mental health condition.
To qualify, you need to have had difficulty walking or looking after yourself (eg cooking or dressing yourself) for at least three months. These difficulties should be expected to last for at least the next six months.
Disability Living Allowance is made up of:
The amount of Disability Living Allowance you receive depends on how much help or supervision you need to walk or take care of yourself (or both). Some people will be entitled to get one component, while others may get both. You don’t have to be getting the help to qualify.
You should also know that:
To qualify for the mobility component you must be unable or virtually unable to walk without severe discomfort, or need guidance or help most of the time when walking outdoors.
The mobility component is paid at one of two rates depending on how your disability affects you:
The lower and higher rates of the mobility component of Disability Living Allowance.
View a large version of this diagram|.
To qualify for the care component, you don’t need to have a carer. It’s the care you need that makes you eligible, not the care you get. For example, you could be eligible for the care component because you find it difficult to get out of bed, have a bath or cook yourself a meal. The care component is paid at one of three rates listed below, depending on the amount of help and care you need:
The lowest, middle and highest rates of the care component of Disability Living Allowance.
View a large version of this diagram|.
If you qualify for the middle or highest rate of the care component and you have a carer, your carer may be entitled to Carer’s Allowance|.
If you're receiving Disability Living Allowance and your care or mobility needs increase, you may become entitled to an increase in your Disability Living Allowance.
You need to make a claim for Disability Living Allowance before you turn 65, but if you're awarded the benefit, it will still be paid to you after you have turned 65 if you continue
to meet the qualifying criteria.
If you're terminally ill, you can apply for Disability Living Allowance under the 'special rules'. Under these rules, you don’t need to meet the three- and six-month qualifying conditions. Your claim will be dealt with quickly and you'll receive the Disability Living Allowance care component at the highest rate. You may also be eligible for the mobility component if you have difficulty walking.
All special rules claims for Disability Living Allowance are currently reviewed after three years.
It’s a good idea to get help from an experienced welfare rights adviser when filling in the claim form. To apply, call the Benefit Enquiry Line| free on 0800 882 200, textphone 0800 243 355 or apply online at direct.gov.uk/doitonline|
To apply, call the Disability and Carers Service|, the Benefit Enquiry Line| or your local Social Security or Jobs and Benefits office|. You can also download an application form at nidirect.gov.uk |
Your employer may be able to organise this or you can contact your local HM Revenue & Customs Enquiry Centre|. If your circumstances have changed, it’s worth asking if you’re still paying the correct amount of tax.
As part of the Welfare Reform Act 2012|, Disability Living Allowance will be replaced by a Personal Independence Payment (PIP) for people of working age from April 2013.
PIP will have many similarities with Disability Living Allowance. In particular, it will have two components: a daily living component (similar to the current care component) and a mobility component.
Between 2013 and 2016, everyone aged between 16 and 64 receiving Disability Living Allowance will be reassessed to see whether they are entitled to PIP. People entitled to PIP will have their claims transferred over and their Disability Living Allowance will stop. Those not found to be entitled to PIP will be informed and their Disability Living Allowance will stop. They may be able to claim other benefits instead.
At the moment, there are no plans to extend PIP to children under 16 or people over 65. However, these groups may be transferred over from Disability Living Allowance at a later date.
Content last reviewed: 1 April 2012
Next planned review: 2013
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Talk to a benefits adviser in your area, find out if you are eligible for benefits or grants or ask Macmillan about any money worries you might have.
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