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Wednesday, 3 October 2023

Attendance Allowance - eligibility

You may be able to get Attendance Allowance if you are aged 65 or over and need help with personal care or supervision to keep you safe.

Your care needs

Already claiming Attendance Allowance and want to report a change in your circumstances - find out more

To get Attendance Allowance, your disability must be severe enough for you to need any of the following:

  • help with things such as washing (and getting in or out of the bath or shower), dressing, eating, getting to and using the toilet, or communicating your needs
  • supervision to avoid putting yourself or others in substantial danger, for example, needing someone to keep an eye on your medical condition or diet, or because you cannot control the way you behave
  • someone with you when you are on dialysis

There are two rates of Attendance Allowance depending on how your disability affects you:

  • the lower rate, if you need help with personal care frequently or supervision continually throughout the day only, help with personal care or someone to watch over you during the night only, or someone with you when you are on dialysis
  • the higher rate, if you meet both a day and a night condition for the middle rate, or if you are terminally ill and claiming under special rules (see below)

You can get Attendance Allowance even if no one is actually giving you the care you need - even if you live alone.

Special rules - if you are terminally ill

If you have a progressive disease and are not reasonably expected to live for more than another six months, there are special rules to help you get Attendance Allowance more quickly and easily. You can get the higher rate immediately, whatever your care needs are, without waiting until you have needed help for six months.

You can make a claim for someone under the special rules without them knowing or without their permission. If they satisfy the relevant conditions, they will get a letter saying that they have been awarded Attendance Allowance, but special rules will not be mentioned.

To claim under these special rules, complete an Attendance Allowance claim form and get a separate completed form DS1500 from your doctor, specialist or consultant to send with it.

You can find out more about caring for someone who is terminally ill in the 'caring for someone' section.

Your residence

There are conditions about your circumstances and where you live, which you need to meet to get Attendance Allowance.

Additional links

Information about Disability Benefits - BSL version

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