Financial support and benefits

Find out which benefits, concessions and schemes you and your family could be entitled to.

For a benefits check contact Salford Welfare Rights and Debt Advice Service or visit the Contact a Family website to find out if you're missing out on any benefits.

Disability Living Allowance

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is a tax-free benefit for children who need help looking after themselves or who have difficulty walking because they are physically or mentally disabled. DLA can be paid on top of earnings, benefits or tax credits and savings are not taken in to account. An award of DLA can lead to extra payments of tax credits, income support, housing benefit and council tax benefit.

In terms of eligibility your child must need a lot more help or supervision than other children of the same age. The DLA is split in to two parts - mobility and care, where each has different rates of funding (low-high).

You are able to claim for mobility needs if your child:

  • is unable, or virtually unable, to walk (from age three)
  • is assessed to be both 100% disabled because of loss of eyesight and not less than 80% disabled because of deafness (from age three)
  • is severely mentally impaired with severe behavioural problems and qualifies for the highest rate of care component (from age three)
  • needs guidance or supervision when walking out of doors (from age five)

You can claim for care needs before your child is aged three months, but benefit will normally only be paid for children three months or older, except in special circumstances. For further information or to request a claim form please contact the dedicated Benefits Enquiry Line on 0800 88 22 00, textphone: 0800 24 33 55 (8.30am to 6.30pm from Monday to Friday, and 9am to 1pm on Saturday). You can also contact your local Jobcentre Plus or go on the GOV.UK site for other ways to claim. You can download the 'Disability Living Allowance for children' leaflet below.

Carer's allowance

Carer's allowance is the main state benefit for carers, which is paid to someone aged 16 or over providing care to a disabled child or adult. If your child gets Disability Living Allowance (DLA) care component at the middle or highest rate, and you are caring for them for 35 hours a week or more, you may be able to get Carer's allowance. Other benefits may also affect your eligibility. You should make a claim for Carer's allowance within three months of the date you get a decision on your child's DLA, so that you don't lose any benefit.

If you are caring for a disabled child and would like further advice and support please contact the Salford Carer's Centre on 0161 883 0217 or email salford.carers@gaddum.co.uk. You can get a claim form by contacting the Benefit Enquiry Line on 0800 88 22 00 or the Carer's Allowance Unit on 01253 856 123. Alternatively, you can apply online. The 'Carer's Allowance' leaflet can be downloaded below.

Find out of you qualify for a carers personal budget.

Extra tax credits for disabled children

If your child has a disability, or if you're responsible for a child with a disability, you may qualify for extra tax credits, to help cover the cost of looking after them. You are eligible for extra tax credits if your child is blind or is receiving Disability Living Allowance and you may also be eligible for an additional sum if your child is severely disabled and receives the highest rate care component of the Disability Living Allowance.

To find out more about how much you may get and to request a claim form please call the Tax Credit Helpline on 0845 300 3900, textphone 0845 300 3909 (open 8am to 8pm, seven days a week). For further information on tax credits please visit the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) website or GOV.UK.

Direct payments

Direct payments are a way of arranging social care services for disabled children and young people and their families. Direct payments can be made to those with parental responsibility for a disabled child, giving them greater choice and flexibility over how, where and when support services are arranged. The local authority will decide whether a child is eligible by carrying out an assessment of needs called a Community Care Assessment. It is now mandatory for local authorities to offer the choice of direct payments and because direct payments come under the Children Act 1989 they should safeguard and promote the welfare of children in the same way as direct services.

As a parent you can use direct payments to buy a placement at a nursery offering specialist support, for short breaks, equipment, for personal care or to provide assistance for your child to attend an activity or after school club. It could also be used to employ a person to support and care for your child as a day or overnight carer.

For information, advocacy and support for direct payments please contact SUGGEST - Direct Payments Team on 0161 789 8670 or email office@suggest.org.uk.

Charitable trusts

The Family Fund
The Family Fund gives grants to lower income families with severely disabled children for things that make life easier and more enjoyable. Call the helpline on 01904 621115 or email info@familyfund.org.uk.

Turn2us
Turn2us is part of the Elizabeth Finn charity and provides an online and telephone service that helps people access the money available to them through benefits, grants and other financial help. Visit the Turn2us website for help finding grant-giving charities or call free on 0808 802 2000 (Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm).

Disabled Facilities Grant

A Disabled Facilities Grant is a local council grant to help towards the cost of adapting your home to enable you to continue to live there. A grant is paid when the council considers that changes are necessary to meet your needs, and that the work is reasonable and practical.

The amount paid is usually based on a financial assessment, however there is no means testing for families of disabled children under 19. The maximum amount the council can pay is £30,000. Grant applications will only be considered following an occupational therapist recommendation. Call 0161 607 1448 to find out more.

Council tax reduction
You may be entitled to a reduction in council tax if you are disabled or have a disabled person living with you, whether this be an adult or child. There are certain requirements and features of your home that entitle you to a reduction. You can download a disability reduction claim form, or use our benefits enquiry form.

Children under five

Free early education for three and four year olds
All three and four year olds are entitled to 15 hours free early education and childcare the term after their third birthday. To find out more about places in your local area please contact Salford's Starting Life Well Information Service by emailing SLW@salford.gov.uk. You can also call 0161 778 0384.

Two year old funding pilot
Some two year olds in Salford are entitled to free childcare, subject to meeting qualifying criteria.

Further information on financial support for disabled people
To find out more please visit the GOV.UK financial support pages under the disabled people section.

This page was last updated on 18 April 2017

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