Finding out about your entitlements and financial support opportunities can be difficult, I found a lot of information through speaking with other parents, you’re Early Support Keyworker can help you with this if you have access to one. Below are listed some of the potential avenues you could explore.
Disability Living Allowance
DLA is extra money if your child has extra care needs and /or problems with walking. It is non-means tested (it’s the same whatever your income), tax free and does not affect any other allowances you receive for your child.
Care Component: Paid to parents with children who have additional needs with self care.
Mobility Component: Paid to parents with children who need help getting around. This can be awarded to a child once they turn the age of three.
Getting DLA often opens doors to further information and services. Telephone Benefit Enquiry Line: 0800 88 22 00 or contact your local disability benefits centre to get claim forms.
Personal Independence Payment
If your child is turning 16 find out about the new Personal Independence Payment (PIP) benefit being introduced by the government. PIP will replace DLA for people aged 16 to 64.
If you spend at least 35 hours a week looking after someone who is getting DLA at the middle or higher rate for personal care, you can apply for the Carer’s Allowance.
For more information, telephone:
1. Carers Allowance Unit: 01253 85 61 23
2. Benefits Enquiry Line: 0800 88 22 00.
1. Child Tax Credit is payable to families with dependent children whether the claimant is working or not. Nine out of ten families with children qualify and this is paid in addition to Child Benefit.
2. Working Tax Credit is for people working at least 16 hours a week. This provides a top-up to wages for those on a low income. There is also a specific childcare element of Working Tax Credit, which helps working parents with the cost of registered childcare.
Getting registered as blind/visually impaired
There are two categories of registration: “severely sight impaired /blind” and “sight impaired /partially sighted”. Being registered as severely sight impaired /blind does not necessarily mean that you are totally without sight or will lose all your sight in the future.
There have been recent changes to the way registration works, so you may also hear this referred to as notification or certification. A consultant ophthalmologist can assess whether you qualify for registration as either:
sight impaired (partially sighted)
or severely sight impaired (blind).
If they think you do qualify, the ophthalmologist will complete a certificate of vision impairment and send it to your local social services department.
You will then be contacted by social services they will offer help and advice regarding all aspects of life, such as independent living skills, mobility, education and support. They will also tell you about all the professional’s that can help assist you.
Please look at the Who’s Who section, this is a guide to all the professionals that may support you.
Parking (Blue Badges)
Blue Badges allow you to park in the disabled bays, which are located closer to the facilities you are intending to access.
The badge is personal to yourself and you don’t have to own a car to be eligible for one. You are entitled to one if;
1. you receive the higher rate Mobility Component of DLA
2. are registered blind
3. or have severe difficulty walking.
Road Tax Exemption
You can apply for a Certificate for Exemption from Road Tax if you receive the higher rate of the mobility component of DLA (not for children under three).
Please contact the address below for further details:
Disability and Carer Benefits Directorate
Disability and Carers Service
Blackpool FY2 0YE
Tel: 08457 12 34 56
Or click here for further information about Road Tax Exemption.
This charity makes cars available to those who have additonal mobility needs, if your child is aged over 3 years and is on higher rate mobitlity component Disability Living Allowance (DLA) then you may be able to access one of these vehicles through the scheme.
Tel: 0845 4564 566
Television Licence Reduction
If there is a person living within your household who is registered as ‘severley visually impaired then you can apply to the TV Licencing agency yo have a 50% reduction in your fee.
Please follow the link below for further information:
There are lots of organisations that offer financial help with the cost of toys, equipment, holidays or household items that benefit the child and/or make caring easier.
Some grants are funded by the government. Others are funded by charitable trusts and voluntary organisations. Some grants are one-off payments whereas with others you can apply each year.
This is a “limited” central government grant to support carers in getting a break. It may provide grants for such things as holidays, play equipment, toys and play schemes.
Family Fund Trust
The Family Fund gives grants to lower income families with severely disabled children for things that make life easier and more enjoyable. They can provide help with such things as holidays, washing machines, driving lessons, computers and hospital visiting costs. Parents or carers can apply if their child is 16 years or under in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, or 17 or under in Wales.
Family Fund Trust
PO Box 50
Tel: 0845 130 4542
Lots of charities that support the Visual Impaired offer grants to help with the cost of specialist equipment and treats. Charities also offer access to events that cater for children with sight problems. A charity that we work closely with is VICTA. VICTA supports blind and partially sighted children, young people and their families across the UK.