Common Welfare Benefits

Find out more about some of the most common benefits that you may be entitled to:

1. Attendance Allowance
This is a tax-free benefit that does not depend on your income. It is paid to people aged 65 or over needing help with personal care because of illness or disability.
2. Bereavement Benefits
You can claim a Bereavement benefit if your husband, wife or civil partner has died. These benefits are not means-tested and can be paid whether or not you are working. If the bereavement happened on or after 6 April 2017, you may be able to claim a new benefit called Bereavement Support Payment. If the bereavement happened before 6 April 2017, you may be able to claim Bereavement Allowance, Widowed Parent's Allowance, or Bereavement Payment.

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3. Carer's Allowance
This is a benefit paid to those who care for someone who receives Attendance Allowance or Disability Living Allowance with care component, or PIP with daily living component (at the high or middle rate). The care must be regular and substantial, and there are some conditions regarding employment and income. Claiming Carer's Allowance can affect the benefits of the person you're caring for so it is very important to seek advice before claiming this benefit.

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4. Child Tax Credits
This is paid by HM Revenues & Customs to people with dependent children.
5. Council Tax Reduction
If you are on a low income you could get help to pay your Council Tax. If you claim Universal Credit you must also make a separate claim for Council Tax Reduction. Some discounts and exemptions may also be available. To make an application or for more information, please contact your own local authority.
6. Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is a tax-free benefit for disabled people who need help with mobility or care costs. Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is now replacing Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for disabled people aged 16 to 64. Disability Living Allowance will remain available for children under the age of 16 who have a disability.

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7. Discretionary Housing Payments
You can apply to your local council for a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) to help with your housing costs, but only if you are already entitled to Housing Benefit or the Housing Costs element of Universal Credit. You can also apply for a DHP if you are affected by the Bedroom Tax, face financial hardship due to the benefit cap or are struggling to pay your rent. For more information, please contact your own local authority.
8. Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
ESA is paid to those whose ability to work is limited by ill health, injury, or impairment. There are two types of ESA, contributory and income related. You are entitled to ESA if you are found to have a limited capability for work. You claim ESA from your Job Centre.

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9. Housing Benefit
If you're on a low income and need help paying your rent then you might be eligible for housing benefit. It can be paid whether or not you are in work. The amount you get depends on your income, personal circumstances and size of your home. Your local council pays this benefit.
10. Income Support
This is paid to people who are not working more than 16 hours a week. It can top-up other income to a minimum level. Claims can be made at the Job Centre.

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11. Job Seekers Allowance (JSA)
This benefit is paid if you are unemployed and looking for full time work. There are two types of JSA, contributory and income related. You can claim JSA from your Job Centre and also online.

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12. Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
PIP is replacing Disability Living Allowance for working-age people. It is a tax-free benefit that does not depend on your income. It is paid to people who need help getting around, or people who need help with personal care, or both. Disability Living Allowance can still be paid for a child with care or mobility difficulties.
13. Scottish Welfare Fund
The Scottish Welfare Fund provides a safety net for vulnerable people on low incomes by providing Community Care and Crisis Grants.  The Scottish Welfare Fund is a Scotland-wide scheme, delivered by local authorities. For more information, please contact your own local authority. 
14. Universal Credit (UC)

Universal Credit is paid if you are on a low income, whether in or out of work. It replaces the other income-related benefits.

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Please contact Jacquie or Andrew if you would like more information on these or any other benefits. Please also see our benefit changes section to find out about changes that are taking place now and in the future

15. Working Tax Credits
Working Tax Credits are paid to single people working 16 hours a week or more and couples working 24 hours a week or more, and on a low income. It is worked out by HM Revenue & Customs.

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