In this episode of the Age Space Podcast, Jason Butler, our resident finance guru, talks State Benefits and highlights some key pots of funding to which you, or the person you are caring for, could be entitled.
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Show notes for this episode
Click on the following links to jump to sections of the show notes:
- What is pension credit?
- What is attendance allowance?
- What is carers allowance?
- What is carers credit?
- What is universal credit?
- Council tax reduction for those living with Dementia
- entitledto website
What is pension credit?
If you don’t have full entitlement to a state pension, the government can top up your pension income. You can apply at: www.gov.uk
What is attendance allowance?
This is not means tested and is available for anyone aged 65 or over who needs help or support at home or in a care home. There are two levels:
- Lower level (Approx £58 per week) – this is easier to get, as people with very low level issues and needs may still qualify;
- Higher level (Approx £87 per week) – if you don’t have a terminal illness or prognosis, you must have had a condition for 6 months before you can claim. But, if you do have a terminal illness, you can claim immediately, and you can be eligible whilst still undergoing treatment for this.
We have put together a thorough guide on eligibility for attendance allowance, which you can read here.
What is carers allowance?
If the person you are looking after qualifies for attendance allowance or disability benefits, you may qualify for carers allowance. To be eligible, you:
- Must be caring for the person receiving the benefits for 35 or more hours per week (this includes things like doing their shopping or driving them to appointments), but you don’t have to be related to or living with them;
- Can’t be earning over £123 per week (after you have dedicated pension contributions).
We describe carers allowance in more detail in the episode, which you can listen to at the top of this page.
What is carers credit?
If you don’t qualify for carers allowance, you can apply for carers credit which qualifies you for the same state pension benefits, as if you were working as a full time employee.
What is universal credit?
This is the umbrella term for the various benefits you are receiving which are paid to you monthly in one overall payment. If you are receiving universal credit, still working and caring for someone else, but not getting paid for this, you may qualify for a care component premium.
We go through the range of credit options which are available in the conversation with Jason Butler. To listen, head to the top of the page and click play within the player box.
Council tax reduction for those living with Dementia
If there is only one adult living in the home, they will qualify for a 25% reduction in council tax. If you are living with someone who has Dementia, you could qualify for at least a 25% reduction on your council tax. You can arrange this by contacting your local authority, who will normally ask for a letter from the person’s GP confirming their diagnosis.
Check out the entitledto website
To help you understand which benefits you may be eligible for: www.entitledto.co.uk. For the less internet savvy, head to your local Citizens Advice Bureau who have specialist money counsellors who provide this service free of charge. These free resources should be your first port of call.
Visit our website at www.agespace.org, Facebook page (search for Age Space) and Twitter account (@agespace) for more information and free advice and support on all aspects of caring for elderly parents.
Show produced by Husain Husaini at Wire Free Productions.