State pension: Guy Opperman says SNP are ‘misguided’
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Some state pensioners may be eligible to claim an additional benefit payment named Attendance Allowance. This particular benefit is designed to assist with the extra costs that accumulate from someone having a disability which is classified as “severe” enough that they need a person to care for them. However, claimants of Attendance Allowance have a responsibility to report any changes to their circumstances to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) as soon as possible.
This is due to a person’s circumstances potentially affecting how much they are entitled to from the DWP.
Failure to adequately and accurately report one’s circumstances to the Government department could result in a benefit claimant being taken to court.
Alternatively, they may be forced to pay a financial penalty if they withhold or provide false information about their Attendance Allowance claim.
Anyone who needs to update the DWP about any circumstance changes can call the Attendance Allowance helpline at 0800 731 0122.
This helpline for benefit claimants is open from Monday to Friday, 8am to 3:30pm.
It is vital an Attendance Allowance recipient calls the DWP if the level of help they need or their condition changes.
Furthermore, they must inform the Government if they have to or plan to go into a hospital or a care home.
Changes to circumstances can also include being away for an extended period of time, such as leaving the country for more than four weeks or going to prison.
Also, if a claimant’s personal details (name, address or bank details) or that of their doctor’s change, they must tell the DWP.
Those who are not British citizens who are claiming Attendance Allowance but update the DWP if their immigration status changes.
If someone is accidentally paid too much in the benefit payment, they may have to pay the money back.
This will happen if the claimant was overpaid by mistake, did not report a change straight away or provided the wrong information.
As a benefit payment, Attendance Allowance is composed of two different payment rates with receipts receiving a certain amount depending on the level of care that is required.
Those in receipt of Attendance Allowance could either get £60 or £89.60 a week to help with their care.
Taking this into account, those claiming the highest possible amount of the benefit payment could lose almost £90 if they fail to report changes to their circumstances.
Recently, the UK Government has been encouraging state pensioners who have a long-term condition to apply for disability benefits, like Attendance Allowance if they are in need of help.
Chloe Smith, the UK Government’s Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work, explained why it is important that disabled people use the support offered by the DWP.
Ms Smith said: “Living with a long-term illness or disability can have a profound effect on daily life, both for those with a diagnosis and those who care for them.
“So it’s vitally important you are receiving all the help you are entitled to.
“Millions of people already receive this support and I would urge anyone who thinks they may be eligible for extra financial help to check online.”
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