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Disability Living Allowance

Claiming Disability Living Allowance

Disability Living Allowance can only be claimed for children aged under 16, it has been abolished for all new claims from people aged between 16 and 65. Any new claim for this age group should be for Personal Independence Payment instead.

Current claimants of Disability Living Allowance aged between 16 and 65 will be reassessed for Personal Independence Payment when they have a change in circumstances, when their current award comes up for review, or for indefinite awards this is being done on a postcode basis in great britain and a random selection basis in Northern Ireland.

What is Disability Living Allowance

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is a tax-free benefit for disabled children and adults to help with extra costs you may have because you're disabled. If you under 65 and have care or mobility needs due to an illness or disability (physical or mental) you may be able to claim Disability Living Allowance. You can get Disability Living Allowance whether or not you work. It isn't usually affected by any savings or income you may have. If you're aged 65 or over, you may be able to get Attendance Allowance.

Disability Living Allowance has two parts called 'components':

  • a care component - if you need help looking after yourself or supervision to keep safe.
  • a mobility component - if you can't walk or need help getting around.

Some people will be entitled to get just one component; others may get both.

The care component and mobility component are paid at different rates depending on how your disability affects you. For more information see DLA care component and DLA mobility component.

Can I get it?

Disability Living Allowance can only be claimed for children aged under 16, it has been abolished for all new claims from people aged between 16 and 65. Any new claim for this age group should be for Personal Independence Payment instead. Each claim is assessed individually to see whether you meet the eligibility rules and which rate is payable.

How do I claim?

Any new claim for 16 - 65 year olds should be for Personal Independence Payment instead.

Disability Living Allowance is administered by the Department for Work and Pensions. Contact details are on the Disability benefits helpline page. For Northern Ireland claim details are on the NIdirect website.

The application form is very long and asks for a lot of personal information. You should get a friend, relative or adviser to help you complete it if possible. Many advice agencies can make an appointment for you to visit them to do this. There may be some sections of the form that you are more comfortable filling in on your own, but a professional adviser is used to dealing with sensitive information and can help you complete the form correctly. For organisations that can help with claiming disability benefits please visit the sites on our more advice page.

Effect on other benefits and entitlements

If you start to get Disability Living Allowance it might increase the amount of other benefits you're entitled to because of an extra amount called a premium, for example:

  • Income Support
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • Pension Credit
  • Housing Benefit
  • Council Tax Support
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit

Disability Living Allowance is normally ignored as income for working out these income-related benefits and tax credits.

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