5. Money, benefits and legal issues > Money and benefits

Money and benefits

5) Proposed changes to the benefits system (2)

Man in a wheelchair
The current Disability Living Allowance will be replaced by a new Personal Independence Payment. This will start from April 2013  for people ages 16 to 64. (If you receive Disability Living Allowance now there will be a phased introduction to the new Personal Independence Payment and you will be advised by the government when to apply for the new benefit.)  Both  have two components – Mobility and Daily Living. Payments will be paid to contribute to the additional costs disabled people face to lead their lives. It will only be for people who have a long term health condition and can only be claimed after a period of six months after the onset of the condition and if that condition will still be present for another six months after claim is made. Special arrangements will be made for people with terminal illness to fast track payments. Claimants will be under 65 years old.

Payments will only be paid following an assessment. Details of what this new assessment will include or who will do the assessments are not yet known. The assessment is likely to be face to face contact with a health care professional. All payments of the proposed new benefit will be subject to review.

Claimants will be responsible for reporting any changes in health which may affect the level of benefit paid with penalties for not reporting if this could have resulted in a lowering of the payment.

Over 65’s with a disability and care needs will still be able to claim Attendance Allowance as they would now.

Carers Allowance is also subject to review by the government. It is not clear yet if changes will be made to this benefit