Attendance Allowance

Attendance Allowance is a benefit for people aged 65 or over who need either care or

Attendance Allowance is not means tested. It is tax free and is not based on National Insurance contributions. It is paid on top of any earnings or other income you may have, and is not affected by any savings you have. It is almost always paid in addition to other social security benefits. Attendance Allowance can also act as a gateway to other benefits.

You do not need to have a carer, or someone helping you, to qualify for Attendance

Who can claim?
You can only claim Attendance Allowance once you have had problems with care or supervision for six months.

Attendance Allowance is paid because you need either care or supervision from another person. The care you receive must relate to some kind of ‘bodily function’, such as with dressing, bathing, toileting and getting safely around the home which includes walking, seeing, hearing, breathing ad infinitum. The supervision that you need must be necessary to avoid substantial danger to yourself or others.

There are two different rates for Attendance Allowance, reflecting the amount of care or
supervision that you need. The higher rate may apply if you need help throughout the day
and the night. The lower rate may apply if you either need help just throughout the day or just throughout the night.

How to claim
You can get a claim-pack by contacting the Benefits Enquiry Line: 0800 882200.

To help your claim, you may wish to keep a diary of your care needs over a few days. This would be useful if your care needs vary. Keep a copy of the diary for yourself and attach another to the claim-form before you send it off.

For further information on AA to find out whether you qualify, the website ( is a fairly good resource for the most up to date information
and any changes to welfare or benefit rules and regulations are likely to be on there before filtering down to the job centre frontline (or call centre staff.)

The Benefit Enquiry Line (BEL) 0800 882 200 gives free advice on benefits for disabled people or contact your local Jobcentre Plus office.

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