According to the DWP, one of the most underclaimed benefits is Attendance Allowance with around 3.4 million pensioners predicted to be missing out on the extra cash boost each month. Attendance Allowance is paid to Britons who are of state pension age, which is 66 years, and who have a disability or condition that affects their everyday life. Medical conditions that could make someone eligible to qualify include things such as arthritis, heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease, or mental health issues such as dementia.
To be eligible, people will need to require help for at least six months before claiming due to their condition.
The help someone needs can include help with things like getting dressed, eating or drinking, getting in and out of bed, bathing or showering and going to the toilet, or help to stay safe.
However, the DWP reiterate that people do not need to require a carer to be eligible.
Paid weekly and at two different rates, the amount of Attendance Allowance someone gets depends on the level of care they need.
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Pensioners should receive £61.85 if they need help during the day or at night.
However, if someone needs help during the day and night they could receive £92.40.
People who have a terminal illness are able to claim the higher amount.
Over the course of the year, a person could potentially receive an income boost worth £4,428.
Care home residents, whose care is paid for by the local authority, won’t usually be entitled to Attendance Allowance.
However, it’s important to differentiate that they’ll still be able to claim Attendance Allowance if they pay for all of their own care home costs.
The financial support is not a “means-tested” benefit which means a person’s savings or income won’t affect the claim.
Attendance Allowance claimants are also eligible for the Government’s “Christmas Bonus”, awarded to people claiming certain benefits during the qualifying week, which is usually the first full week of December.
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The second part is the “Savings Credit” which is a bonus for low-income pensioners who have put aside money towards their pension income.
In the 2022-23 tax year, guarantee credit can top up a pensioner’s weekly income to £182.60 if they are single and by £278.70 if they are part of a couple.
In its calculations, the DWP will include state pension, other pensions, earnings from employment and self-employment, and other social security benefits as income.
For Savings Credit, the amount a person can receive depends on whether a person meets the “savings credit threshold”.
People must have a weekly income of at least £158.47 a week if they are single or £251.70 a week if people are claiming as a couple.