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Disability Living Allowance

Disability Living Allowance is a benefit for people under the age of 65 who have a long-term illness or disability, either physical or mental.

It is paid in respect of two types of needs - one is care, the other is mobility. The benefit has two parts based upon these needs. One part is called the Care Component if you need help with personal care.
The other part is called the Mobility Component if you need help with getting about. You may qualify for a Care Component, Mobility Component, or both.

The Care Component is payable at three rates (lowest, middle and higher).
The Mobility Component is payable at two rates (lower and higher).
The component awarded will be the one appropriate to your needs.

Neither component is payable until you have needed help for three months. You must also be expected to need help for at least a further six months. (However, there are special rules if you are terminally ill. See separate leaflet called 'Benefits for the Terminally Ill'.)

Your entitlement to Disability Living Allowance is not usually affected by your finances, savings, or from any other income that you may be getting from work, other benefits, etc.

Care Component: who qualifies?
The Care Component takes account of how much care you need. It makes no difference whether or not you are actually getting that care.

Lowest rate
Payable if you need some attention in connection with your bodily functions. For example, this might include help with eating and drinking, washing and dressing, or using the toilet.
If you are over 16, it may also be payable where you are unable to prepare a cooked main meal. This might be because you cannot, for instance, turn a tap, carry a pan of hot water, or lack the mental ability to plan a meal.

Middle rate
Payable if you need more substantial care. For example:

Frequent attention throughout the day in connection with your bodily functions. OR
Continual supervision throughout the day in order to avoid substantial danger to yourself or to others. OR
A lot of attention during the night in connection with your bodily functions. OR
To be watched over for much of the night.
Help needed with jobs like housework, shopping or gardening does NOT count.

Highest rate
Payable if you need the same sort of care as for the middle rate, but need it for 24 hours a day.

Mobility Component: who qualifies?
Lower rate
Payable if you need someone to provide guidance or supervision when you are outside on unfamiliar routes.

Higher rate
Payable if you have severe mobility problems. For example:

If you cannot walk or are virtually unable to walk. OR
If you have a double amputation, or were born without legs or feet. OR
If you are deaf or blind. OR
If you have a severe learning disability or severe behaviour problems and get the highest rate of the Care Component.
The Mobility Component takes account of how much help you may need to be mobile. It makes no difference whether or not you are actually getting that help. However, it is usually not paid if you cannot be moved, or could not appreciate going out. For example, if you were in a coma.

What if I am away from home or my circumstances change?
To be eligible for Disability Living Allowance you will normally have lived in the UK for at least six months in the previous year. The benefit is changed in certain circumstances. For example, it may be stopped if you are admitted to hospital for four weeks or more. The Care Component is stopped if you go to live in a care home that is funded by the state. The rate may change if your disability gets better or worse.

Can people over 65 claim Disability Living Allowance?
Disability Living Allowance has to be claimed before you reach 65. However, once awarded, Disability Living Allowance continues to be paid after you reach 65. It continues for as long as you satisfy the conditions. However, if you are 65 or over and develop care needs, you may be eligible for Attendance Allowance. (See separate leaflet.)

What are the rules for children?
To qualify for the Care Component, children must need much more care than other children of the same age. For the Mobility Component they must need much more outdoor guidance and supervision than other children of the same age.

How much is Disability Living Allowance?
Disability Living Allowance is tax-free. Payment is usually made directly into a bank account, building society account, post office account, or national savings account. The rates at April 2007 are as follows (and they usually increase each April):

Care Component
Lowest rate - £17.10 per week
Middle rate - £43.15 per week
Highest rate - £64.50 per week
Mobility Component
Lower rate - £17.10 per week
Higher rate - £45.00 per week
Note: the rules for benefits can sometimes become complicated. The amounts shown above are a guide and your circumstances may affect the amount that you get. You may even be entitled to an increase in certain other benefits if you receive Disability Living Allowance.

How do you claim Disability Living Allowance?
You, or someone on your behalf, needs to complete a claim form. To get a claim form:

Telephone the Benefit Enquiry Line (details below) to request a form. OR
Go to the website of DIrect.gov (details below). This is a government site where you can download a claim form. OR
If you live in Northern Ireland, you can go to the website of the Department for Social Development in Northern Ireland (details below) which has a claim form online. OR
Get one from your local Jobcentre Plus office or local social security office.
The form can be signed by someone on your behalf if you are too sick or disabled to do so. There is also a section on the form which can be filled in and signed by someone who knows how your disability affects you such as a carer, professional care worker, or doctor.

Children under 16 will always have claims made by, and payment made to, an adult appointed to act on their behalf. This is usually a parent or guardian.

A medical examination is not often necessary. However, you may need to be seen by a doctor for assessment if it is not otherwise possible to obtain a clear picture of how your illness or disability affects you.

If you are not sure if you qualify, then seek expert help and advice. See below for sources of help and advice. If you still remain unsure - then claim! The worst thing that could happen is that your claim will be refused. Many people who are entitled to benefits do not get them because they do not claim as they think that they are not eligible for them.

A note for parents who act as carers
If you care for a child who is being paid Disability Living Allowance, or you are intending to claim for it, you may be entitled to Carer's Allowance if the care component is at the middle or highest rate. You may wish to consider claiming for this at the same time.
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I just wanted to add some more details in regards to the Mobility Allowance as well:

MOBILITY COMPONENT

If your child needs help getting around above what is normally acceptable for a child that age,they may qualify for the mobility component.


It's best to get the forms from the DLA Help line on 0845 712 3456 as it will be date stamped. As long as you return the completed pack within six weeks, your claim will be considered from that date.

Give it a high priority . Awards are worth a lot and DLA is a passport benefit to other allowances, premiums and sources of financial help. It can feel more manageable if you have aim to fill in a few pages a day.


It's hard to tackle alone, so ask the Citizens Advice Bureau or a social worker to help . If an expert adviser isn't available, ask a friend to help. Other parents who have children with similar problems can be a great source of information about what to say and what not to say.

Look at all the most recent advice and reports you have about your child. They can often help you understand the underlying reasons why your child appears clumsy or not to listen.

Don't worry too much about spelling or writing in complete sentences.

Tick the small boxes on every page but don't bother filling in pages that aren't relevant. When there is plenty to say, fill up the big boxes. If you run out of space, write in the margins or add extra sheets of paper and paperclip these to the application form.

Don't underestimate the help your child needs. It's easy to forget what other children at this age can do for themselves. Make it clear if your child needs substantially more help than a non-disabled child the same age.

Describe what happens at the dinner table, in the bath, at bedtime, out shopping, on public transport and so on, however painful or ridiculous it feels to share. It's important to write down what you do to help you child to live a fufilled life and one free from danger.

Include incidents that illustrate the problems, times when your child has misread a situation or been misunderstood, the muddle or frustration when your child hasn't had help, or unsupervised problems.

Don't forget that glasses and hearing aids are equipment too .
How often are they lost, mislaid, need adjusting, repairing or cleaning?

Write about the bad days . You can almost be sure that things will get worse the day you post the claim and you'll wish that you had been more detailed on the form.

It can be hard to get supporting advice for nights, so keep a diary for a week or two . Show it to your child's GP or teacher and include it with your claim. It helps if others are able to say that you mention broken nights.

Don't worry about repetition. Common threads running through your claim are important. Read it back. Don't be surprised if you feel shocked or saddened. Keep going, and check if there's anything you've missed and dont be afraid to add more detail.

Check that all professionals whose details you include know you are claiming ; they may well be contacted.
Often GPs get by-passed as your child is referred on to specialist consultants, so it may be worth making an appointment with your doctor to put them in the picture.

Get a supporting statement from a professional who knows your child really well .
Remember that this person may have only seen your child in a clinic or school setting.
Make sure they aren't having to guess about how things are at home. Ask them to read what you have written, or give them a short version of the main points you need stressed. Ask for it back by a particular date, drop it off and pick it up yourself. Don't trust the post, just now this is your only copy and you've invested a lot of time on it.


Send supplementary evidence that supports what you say . Medical reports, assessments, advices and statements of special educational needs are all useful.

Keep a photocopy of your claim , you will need to refer to it if you want a decision looked at again or when the claim is reviewed.


Don't give up if your claim is refused .
Over 50% of decisions are overturned if you ask for the decision to be reviewed or go to appeal.


For more help and advice contact the DLA Help Line: 0845 712 3456.




The Benefits Enquiry Line: 0800 88 22 00 can organise an interpreter and an adviser to make claims over the phone. The form is completed in English, so you'll need to find an interpreter before you can check and sign it.


Your health visitor or social worker should signpost you to local sources of support and some may offer to fill in forms with you.
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Just thought I would add some more info....I have loads in my pc so will probably post some more. Sorry to cut and paste so much but the following article is really useful. Also, look at http://www.bhas.org.uk and download their guide to claiming DLA


What's in a word?

Successfully claiming disability benefits such as attendance allowance or disability living allowance often seems a lottery. The guidance notes to the claim form tell the claimant what the social security official who adjudicates on their claim is looking for but not the exact meaning of the words used in the criteria.

For example, applicants have to show they "require frequent attention throughout the day in connection with their bodily functions, or continual supervision to avoid substantial danger to themselves or others".

To get the highest rate of allowance, they also have to show that, at night-time, they need "prolonged or repeated attention in connection with their bodily functions, or someone to be awake for a prolonged period or at frequent intervals for the purpose of watching over them in order to avoid substantial danger to themselves or others."

Filling in the claim form is hard enough without clients having to meet criteria that only social security staff completely understand. But because every one of those individual words in the phrases given above has been argued over by claimants and their representatives, they have clear and legally supported definitions. So when you next fill in a claim form, use these definitions when describing what help a claimant needs. The words in brackets are references to social security case law.

"Require". Attention or supervision must be required but not necessarily provided (R(A)/1/73). Attention must be reasonably rather than medically required (R(A)/3/86). A severely disabled person is not to be confined to doing only what a severely disabled person can do and only given such attention as keeps them alive (Secretary of State for Social Security v Fairey).
"Frequent". Several times, not just once or twice (R(A)/2/80).
"Attention". The attention is in connection with the bodily function if it provides a substitute solution for an impaired bodily function. Must involve contact, but not necessarily physical - it can be established by the spoken word (Mallinson v Secretary of State for Social Security).
"Throughout the day". Does not mean continually but at intervals, even if irregular (CA 281/1989).
"Bodily functions". Include breathing, hearing, seeing, eating, drinking, walking, sitting, sleeping, getting into or out of bed, dressing, undressing, eliminating waste products, and so on. If, for example, a blind claimant does their own shopping and needs someone to act as a guide, this is attention with the bodily function of seeing (Mallinson again).
"Continual". Not non-stop (R(A)2/75).
"Supervision". Can be precautionary or anticipatory; does not have to be active (Moran v Secretary of State for Social Services). Does not have to eliminate danger, just reduce real risk of harm (R(A)/3/92).
"Substantial danger". Danger to the claimant or another must result from the claimant's condition. Frequency is immaterial, but must not be so improbable that it can be disregarded (R(A)/2/89).
"Prolonged". At least 20 minutes (CA/271/88).
"Repeated". More than once (CDLA/3360/95 and R(A)/2/80).
"Frequent intervals". Not defined but more than "repeated".
Here is an excerpt from the Decision Makers Guide regarding HR mobility. Sorry it is long but helpful - am I allowed to put this on here??

61252 - 61254
Higher rate
61255 The higher rate is payable to people who
1. are unable or virtually unable to walk because of a physical disability1 (seeDMG 61276 ) or
2. are both deaf and blind2 and satisfy the conditions in DMG 61335 - 613373 or
3. are severely mentally impaired4 and
3.1 display severe behavioural problems5 and
3.2 satisfy the conditions for the highest rate care component at DMG 610616 (see DMG 61350 - 61380) or
4. have had both legs amputated either through or above the ankle (see DMG 61330)7 or
5. are for any reason without both legs to the same extent as if they had been amputated either through or above the ankle8 (see DMG 61330 - 61331).
Note: The higher rate is payable only where during most of the period of any award,
the condition allows the person from time to time to benefit from enhanced facilities
for locomotion (see DMG 61413 - 61414)9.
Severely mentally impaired with severe behavioural problems
61350 To satisfy this test for the higher rate of the mobility component a person must be entitled to the highest rate of the care component1, be severely mentally impaired2 (see DMG 61351 - 61370) and have severe behavioural problems3 (see DMG 61376 - 61379). The test is cumulative and if any part of the test is not satisfied a person cannot satisfy the test.

Severely mentally impaired
Arrested development or incomplete physical development of the brain
61351 The first test towards treating a person as being severely mentally impaired is whether they have a state of arrested development or incomplete physical development of the brain, which results in severe impairment of intelligence and social functioning1.

61352 The disabilities counting towards severely mentally impaired are defined as
incomplete physical development of the brain - where a person's brain has failed to grow properly and this can be seen and assessed
arrested development of the brain - where a person's brain is not functioning properly but no physical deficiency is apparent.

61353 A person's brain is fully developed when it reaches its maximum weight and size.
This is accepted to be by the late 20's and invariably before the age of 30.
61354 A person cannot satisfy the severely mentally impaired condition unless it can be established that the cause of the mental impairment (for example accident, disease, injury) happened before the person's brain was fully developed. Degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's Disease that begin after the brain is fully developed do not satisfy the severely mentally impaired condition. Difficult cases should be referred to Medical Services for advice.
61355 If a person has arrested development or incomplete physical development of the brain, the DM must then consider whether this results in severe impairment of intelligence and social functioning1.

Mobility component - definitions 61356 61366
Vol 10 Amendment 16 June 2006

Arrested development or incomplete physical development of the brain and schizophrenia
61356 The severity of schizophrenic disorders can vary from severe chronic deteriorating illnesses to a group of psychoses which are shorter in duration, easier to treat and leave little after effects. Most schizophrenics will not have arrested development or incomplete physical development of the brain. But for those suffering from the most severe type of schizophrenia (in about 30% of all cases), there is neurodevelopment damage which is arrested development of the brain.
61357 Where it can be established that there is arrested development of the brain, the person still has to show that this results in severe impairment of intelligence and social functioning to satisfy the severely mentally impaired test for higher rate mobility component (see DMG 61366 - 61369). Medical advice is that below average intelligence or IQ is not a normal feature of schizophrenia. Schizophrenics may respond or react to others in an unusual or different way but this has no bearing on their intelligence. Therefore, someone whose only disability is
61358 In cases involving schizophrenia, the DM should make sure that the person has no other disability which could satisfy the severely mentally impaired test1. Difficult cases should be referred to Medical Services for advice.

Arrested development or incomplete physical development of the brain and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
61359 It is not possible with the current state of medical knowledge to attribute the condition Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) to a state of arrested development or incomplete physical development of the brain within the meaning of the regulation.

61360 In cases involving attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, the DM should make sure that the person has no other disability which could satisfy the severely mentally impaired test. Difficult cases should be referred to Medical Services for advice.
61361 – 61365
Severe impairment of intelligence
61366 Medically someone with severe impairment of intelligence can generally be described as intellectually three standard deviations below the average IQ of 100. A standard deviation is 15%, so a person with severe impairment of intelligence will have an IQ of 55 or less. It is likely that a person with such a low IQ will have
undergone tests to assess their intelligence. However, although the IQ is likely to be Mobility component - definitions
61367 61370
Vol 10 Amendment 16 June 2006
the essential starting point for considering impairment of intelligence, it is not necessarily decisive.
61367 As well as an IQ of 55 or less, the following points may also indicate that a person has severe impairment of intelligence and should be considered even when the IQ is over 551
1. difficulty with communication - speech may be severely impaired, often only monosyllabic or grunting noises, reading or writing skills may be absent or very poor
2. severe learning difficulties
3. lack of understanding of everyday living. People with severe impairment of intelligence are likely to need specialized schooling, and supervision of all activities. In cases of doubt and where the IQ is over 55 the DM should refer the case to Medical Services for expert advice.

61368 The DM should consider whether they accept;
1. that the assessment of IQ, having had regard to all available evidence, is an adequate reflection of intelligence or
2. having regard to all the available evidence, that despite an IQ of above 55, or in the absence of any objective IQ measurement, the claimant's behaviour is consistent with 'severe impairment of intelligence'. The same evidence may be considered when deciding both the question of "severe impairment of intelligence" and also "severe impairment of social functioning".
Nevertheless the two questions themselves are separate and should be considered
accordingly.
Severe impairment of social functioning
61369 People with severe impairment of social functioning will usually have severe learning difficulties. They will only be able to acquire a few basic social skills after being shown how to perform them. They will have difficulties relating to other people and making friends, and would not be able to carry out basic social skills such as running a simple errand, using public transport and carrying on a conversation.
61370 The term "intelligence" refers to a person's intellect or ability to understand. The term "social functioning" is what that person is able to do with the intelligence they have. For example, some people who have a low Intelligence can relate to other people and perform basic social skills once they are shown how to do them. But
others who have a low intelligence are not able to perform basic tasks or relate to others. It is the latter who would display severe impairment of intelligence and social functioning.
Mobility component - definitions 61371 61379
Vol 10 Amendment 16 June 2006
61371 - 61375
Severe behavioural problems
61376 People are treated as having severe behavioural problems if they exhibit disruptive behaviour that
1. is extreme and
2. regularly requires another person to intervene and physically restrain them
2.1 to prevent them injuring themselves or others or
2.2 damaging property and
3. is so unpredictable that they require another person to be present watching over them whenever they are awake1.
It is essential that all three conditions are satisfied. The disruptive behaviour does not need to be displayed at all times but it must be extreme. The word “extreme” is an ordinary English word which here refers to behaviour which is wholly out of the ordinary.

61377 People who have severe behavioural problems may
be destructive
be reckless with dangerous things
be aggressive and attention seeking
self-mutilate or abuse themselves
be hyperactive
display persistent body movements
disrupt the household during the night.
61378 The conditions at DMG 61376 can only be satisfied if the disruptive behaviour is
1. a regular occurrence and
2. a constant risk.
Aggression, destructiveness, hyperactivity and self injury may require physical restraint.
61379 The claimant’s behaviour must be so destructive and unpredictable that they require the presence of another person to watch over them whenever they are awake. This is in all aspects of the claimant’s life both indoors and out. If a claimant displays behavioural problems at home but elsewhere, for example at school, is well behaved then the test will not be satisfied. Mobility component - definitions 61380 61381
Vol 10 Amendment 16 June 2006
Example
Jane, although displaying some behavioural problems, is capable of playing alone in her room with the door closed. The claim to higher rate mobility component failed as the carer is not required to be present and watching over Jane whenever she is awake as the bedroom door was closed with the carer on one side and Jane on the
other1.
61380 The claimant’s condition must be such that the constant presence of another person is required to intervene, and restrain the claimant, to deal with unpredictable behaviour. The restraint must be a regular occurrence. If supervision, or a structured environment, short of physical restraint prevented the claimant from being disruptive, or from being disruptive on a regular basis the test would not be satisfied1.
Example
Benjamin is disruptive at home whenever his mother leaves the room, or her attention is diverted from him, or he does not get his own way. Whilst in the structured environment of his school Benjamin displayed no behavioural problems.
The claim to the higher rate of the mobility component fails on two counts. At home it is the presence and active interest of his mother that is sufficient to prevent disruptive behaviour. At school it is the structured environment and supervision that prevents the disruptive behaviour. 61381 The information given on the claim form alone is unlikely to be enough for the DM to determine a case under DMG 61351 or DMG 61376. But there should be enough information to identify potential cases. Further evidence may be needed from specialists via Medical Services before the DM can decide the question

mentally impaired with severe behavioural problems flow chart
61382 Severely mentally impaired with severe behavioural problems flow chart
61383 - 61390
Is there evidence of behavioural problems and impaired intelligence? Ss
73(1)© & 73(3) of the CB Act (see DMG 61350)
Is the claimant entitled to highest rate of care component?
Ss 72(1)(b) & 72(1)© of the CB Act (see DMG 61054 et seq)

Is there evidence that the claimant is severely mentally impaired?
Ss 73(3)(a) of the CB Act (see DMG 61351 et seq)

Does the claimant have an arrested development or incomplete
development of the brain?
Reg 12(5) of the DLA Regulations (see DMG 61351 - 61360)

Does the claimant have a severe impairment of intelligence?
Reg 12(5) of the DLA Regulations (see DMG 61366 - 61368)

Does the claimant have severe impairment of social functioning?
Reg 12(5) of the DLA Regulations (see DMG 61369 - 61370)

Is there evidence that the claimant displays severe behavioural
problems? S 73(3)(b) of the CB Act (see DMG 61376)

Does the claimant exhibit extreme disruptive behaviour?
Reg 12(6)(a) of the DLA Regulations (see DMG 61376 - 61381)

Does the claimant regularly require the intervention of another person to
physically restrain them to prevent injury to themselves, others
or damage to property Reg 12(6)(b) of the DLA Regulations
(see DMG 61376 - 61381)

Is the claimant’s behaviour so unpredictable that they require another person to be present and watching over them whenever they are awake?
Reg 12(6)© of the DLA Regulations (see DMG 61380)
Claimant not entitled to higher rate mobility component ANY NO’S
Claimant entitled to higher rate mobility component ALL YES’S
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thanks ive only just come across this, god you can tell i keep putting it off


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