What benefits can I claim?

We know the welfare benefits system can be difficult to understand.

This quick guide looks at the main benefits available – and who gets them.

Housing Benefit

Housing Benefit helps with the cost of rent if you are on a low income. It’s paid if you’re in or out of work. You can claim Housing Benefit at any age. The amount you’ll get depends on:

  • your age
  • your income
  • if you are claiming as a single person
  • if you are claiming for you and your family
  • if you are claiming as part of a couple.

You may get extra benefits if you are disabled or a carer.

For more information, click Housing Benefits.

If you are of working age you can no longer make a new claim for Housing Benefit. If you have housing costs you will need to claim Universal Credit.

Universal Credit

Universal Credit is a single monthly benefit for working-age people on a low income or who are out of work. It replaces six existing benefits, including Tax Credits and Housing Benefit.

You are of working age if you are over 18 and under Pension Credit age. You need to sign a ‘Claimant Commitment’ which sets out what you’ll do to find work. If you don’t do this you may be sanctioned and your benefits cut.

Click on our handy Universal Credit factsheet for WHG tenants. You can also click on this short video for more information.

You can also click on how Universal Credit can help you into work video.

Jobseeker’s Allowance

You cannot apply for contribution-based or income-based JSA anymore. This has been replaced by ‘New JSA’ - you can check your eligibility here.

To get JSA you also have to meet several other conditions, which include showing that you are looking for work. Claim online on the GOV.UK website www.gov.uk or claim on the phone by calling Jobcentre Plus on 0800 055 6688.

Employment Support Allowance

Employment Support Allowance is for people who are unable to work because of illness or disability. It also provides personalised support to those who are able to work.

You will get a medical check called the Work Capability Assessment. This is used to assess what you can do, rather than what you cannot do.

Benefits for over 65s

Retirement Pension
The State Pension is based on National Insurance contributions and is paid when you reach pension age.

State Pension age is currently 66 for women and men. For those born after 5 April 1960, there will be a phased increase in State Pension age to 67, and eventually 68.

Pension Credit
There are two parts to Pension Credit – you may get one or both of them:

  • Guarantee Credit tops up your weekly income to a guaranteed minimum level set by the UK Government.
  • You can only get savings credit if you reached State Pension age before 6 April 2016.

Disability and Carer's benefits

Disability Living Allowance
Disability Living Allowance is a benefit that helps with the extra costs you may face if you’re disabled.

Personal Independence Payment
Personal Independence Payment is a new benefit for people who need help taking part in everyday life or who find it difficult to get around.

It replaces Disability Living Allowance for people aged 16–64 who have extra care needs or mobility needs. It supports those in most need to remain independent.

To ask for a claim pack, call 0800 917 2222. You can also check out the Personal Independence Payment video.

Attendance Allowance
Attendance Allowance is for people aged 65 or over who have care needs. Claiming Attendance Allowance won’t reduce any other income you receive.

You must have needed help with your care needs for at least six months. If you’re terminally ill, you can make a claim straight away. To ask for a claim pack, call the Attendance Allowance helpline on 0800 731 0122.

Carer’s Allowance
For people aged 16 or over who spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone who is ill or who has a disability. To ask for a claim pack, call 0800 731 0297 or by filling in the Carer’s Allowance claim form.

Scottish Benefits

Adult Disability Payment

Adult Disability Payment is a new type of assistance. It can help with the extra costs of living with a disability or health condition. It will replace Personal Independence Payment (PIP) and Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for adults in Scotland.

You could get between £23.70 and £152.15 a week. The amount you get depends on how your condition affects you. More information can be found here.

Child Disability Payment

Child Disability Payment provides support for the extra costs that a disabled child might have.

You can apply for Child Disability Payment for a disabled child under 16. The disability can be mental or physical. Social Security Scotland will pay Child Disability Payment until the child is 18. You can apply online or by calling 0800 182 2222.

Young Carer Grant

Young Carer Grant is a yearly payment of £308.15 for young carers in Scotland.

To be able to get Young Carer Grant, you must be 16, 17 or 18 years old.

You can get a Young Carer Grant once a year, up until you turn 19. You'll need to fill an online form or call Scottish Social Security free on 0800 182 2222 each year you want to apply.

Carers Allowance Supplement

Carer's Allowance Supplement is an extra payment for people in Scotland who get Carer's Allowance on a particular date.

Carer's Allowance Supplement is paid two times a year.

This is administered automatically by Scottish Social Security.

Scottish Child Payment

Scottish Child Payment helps towards the costs of supporting your family. It's a weekly payment of £10 that you can get for every child you look after who's under six years of age. This is rising to £20 from April 2022.

You'll get the payment every four weeks if your application is successful.

You can apply online or by calling the Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222.

For full details on Scottish Benefits and assistance visit https://www.mygov.scot/browse/benefits

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