A guide to benefits and financial help for people affected by cancer. Benefits rates apply April 2009 April 2010

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1 A guide to beefits ad fiacial help for people affected by cacer Beefits rates apply April 2009 April 2010

2 1 Cotets Itroductio to the beefits system... 2 Help for people of workig age... 5 Help for carers Help for pesioers Help with housig costs Help with health costs Help with childre s eeds Trasport Loas ad grats for other expeses More iformatio Useful orgaisatios Macmilla Cacer Support Idex Cacer ca be very expesive, but there are ways to ease the fiacial worries Whe you or someoe close to you has bee diagosed with cacer, moey might ot be oe of the first thigs you thik about. But havig cacer ca be expesive i ways you may ever have expected: you may have to pay for prescriptios, a special diet, child care or travel to hospital. If you are strugglig to cope with the fiacial effect of cacer, remember that there is help available. The aim of this guide is to explai what fiacial beefits are available ad to show you how you ca get this help. To make thigs eve clearer, it may also be helpful to speak to a experieced beefits adviser or to call oe of the useful phoe umbers i this guide (see pages 66 to 69). We hope that, with the right advice ad iformatio, you will be able to get the help you eed with your moey problems allowig you to focus o what really matters.

3 2 Itroductio to the beefits system The Departmet for Work ad Pesios The Departmet for Work ad Pesios (DWP) is resposible for social security beefits, such as Icome Support ad Attedace Allowace. The DWP has several agecies that hadle these beefits, icludig Jobcetre Plus, the Pesio Service ad the Disability ad Carers Service. Jobcetre Plus is the agecy for people of workig age (16 to 65). You ca use them to claim beefits or fid work (or both). Your local office will be listed i the phoe book uder Jobcetre Plus, or visit their website If there is o Jobcetre Plus office i your area yet, your local beefits office will be listed i the phoe book uder social security. The Pesio Service ad the Disability ad Carers Service have ow bee brought together ito a sigle agecy the Pesio, Disability ad Carers Service. The service is resposible for people of pesio age, as well as those plaig for their pesio ad earig retiremet. You ca cotact them by phoe, fax, or letter, with questios about your state pesio or about claimig beefits for people of pesio age, such as Pesio Credit. The service ca arrage a home visit, or for you to visit your local office, if your query caot be dealt with over the phoe. The Pesio, Disability ad Carers Service is also resposible for disabled people ad their carers ad admiisters Disability Livig Allowace, Attedace Allowace ad Carer s Allowace. Your local office will be listed i the phoe book or see There are two types of beefits available from the Departmet for Work ad Pesios; meas-tested beefits ad o meas-tested beefits.

4 Itroductio to the beefits system 3 Meas-tested beefits (MT) These deped o your icome ad savigs, ad those of your parter. These are always o-cotributory (see below). No meas-tested beefits (NMT) No meas-tested beefits ca be either cotributory or o-cotributory: Cotributory beefits (C) These are based o cotributios you have made to the Natioal Isurace cotributio scheme. No-cotributory beefits (NC) You ca claim these eve if you have ot paid Natioal Isurace cotributios. You may fid it useful to read the followig guide produced by the Departmet for Work ad Pesios: A guide for disabled people, those with health coditios ad carers (DHC1JP) icludes details of fiacial ad practical support available. There are also leaflets available givig more details of specific beefits metioed i the guide above. These iclude: Attedace Allowace (AAA5DCS) Disability Livig Allowace (DLAA5DCS) Carer s Allowace (CAA5DCS) Goig ito hospital? (GIHA5DWP) what happes to your beefits ad pesio. You ca ask for these leaflets ad guides at your local office, or dowload them from There is also help available from other orgaisatios. These iclude your local authority (coucil) ad HM Reveue & Customs. For more iformatio see moey, tax ad beefits sectio.

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6 Help for people of workig age 5 Robert s story Robert, who is 48, was recetly diagosed with bowel cacer. He works full-time ad lives o his ow i a reted flat. Robert has 7,000 i savigs. Robert had surgery ad was udergoig a 16-week course of chemotherapy. The side effects of surgery ad cacer treatmet meat that Robert had great difficulty i lookig after himself, ad a simple task such as gettig dressed was a slow ad paiful process. After cotactig a beefits adviser, Robert foud out that he was etitled to Statutory Sick Pay from his employer for up to 28 weeks, ad Employmet ad Support Allowace (ESA) from the govermet after that. Robert also applied for ad received the followig: Disability Livig Allowace (care ad mobility) Worth a extra a week Icome Support Worth a extra a week Housig Beefit ad Coucil Tax Beefit Amout depedig o Robert s persoal circumstaces Icome Tax refud Amout depedig o Robert s persoal circumstaces Road Tax exemptio Disabled Parkig Badge Blue Badge Scheme

7 6 Help for people of workig age Because he was awarded Icome Support, Robert also became eligible for: free prescriptios free eyesight tests ad vouchers for his glasses a full refud of his fares to hospital free NHS detal treatmet free wigs ad fabric supports. If Robert had ot foud out about his etitlemets, he would have had to live o just a week. By claimig the beefits he was etitled to, his icome icreased to a week. As Robert s case shows, people of workig age are etitled to a wide rage of beefits. If you fall withi the 16 to 65 age group, it is importat to explore all the followig areas. Employmet rights You may be covered by employmet law if: your employer dismisses you because of your illess your employer does ot pay you what you are etitled to your employer discrimiates agaist you i ay way because of your illess. Uder the Disability Discrimiatio Act, cacer patiets are defied as disabled from the poit of diagosis. For more advice o your employmet rights cotact Macmilla Cacer Support for a copy of Workig through cacer, their guide for employees, or cotact your local Citizes Advice (details will be i the phoe book or see For details of Citizes Advice Scotlad, visit

8 Help for people of workig age 7 Statutory Sick Pay (NMT/NC) Statutory Sick Pay is paid by your employer for up to 28 weeks of sickess. The stadard rate of Statutory Sick Pay is curretly a week. Whe your Statutory Sick Pay is due to ed, you should check your etitlemet to Employmet ad Support Allowace (see pages 8 to 9). How ca I claim? Ask your employer, who is resposible for makig these paymets. Statutory Sick Pay is a legal miimum ad if you qualify for it, your employer caot pay you less. Occupatioal or compay sick pay You may be etitled to this o top of Statutory Sick Pay check your employmet cotract. If you are self employed you ca still apply for beefits. Your etitlemet to ay beefit will deped o your persoal circumstaces, icome, savigs, care ad/or mobility eeds. Please cotact a beefits adviser for advice. Icapacity Beefit (NMT/C or NC) Icapacity Beefit has bee replaced by Employmet ad Support Allowace (EAS) for ew claimats applyig after 27 October Exisitig claimats o Icapacity Beefit will remai o the beefit for the time beig. The pla is that all claimats will move over to EAS over the ext two years. Icapacity Beefit was paid to people of workig age who had paid the relevat atioal isurace cotributios i the relevat tax years.

9 8 Help for people of workig age Icapacity Beefit is paid at three rates: Short-term lower rate of 67.75, for the first 28 weeks (tax-free durig this period). Short-term higher rate of 80.15, for 29 to 52 weeks. Log-term rate of 89.80, for oe year ad over (people who are termially ill, or receivig the care compoet of Disability Livig Allowace at the higher rate, ca get the log-term rate of Icapacity Beefit after 28 weeks of sickess). Employmet ad Support Allowace This ew beefit was itroduced i October 2008 ad replaces Icapacity Beefit ad Icome Support paid o the grouds of icapacity for work. Employmet ad Support Allowace (EAS) has both a cotributory part ad a meas-tested part. People may get either or both depedig o their cotributio record ad their icome ad capital. Employmet ad Support Allowace is paid at a basic rate for the first 13 weeks of the claim. Durig this time, uless you are termially ill, you will have to udergo a work capability assessmet ad also have to atted a work-focused iterview. Durig the assessmet period, you will be paid at a rate comparable to Jobseeker s Allowace. After the 13 week period you will be assessed ad placed ito oe of two groups: the support group or the work-related activity group. If you are foud to have limited-capability for work, you will be placed i the support group ad will ot have to udertake work related activities. A additioal paymet of will be paid to ayoe i the support group.

10 Help for people of workig age 9 If you are foud ot to have limited-capability for work, you will be placed i the work-related activity group ad will have to atted five more work-focused iterviews. A smaller additioal paymet of will be paid to ayoe i this group. If you are self-employed you are etitled to claim Employmet ad Support Allowace as log as you have paid the correct level of atioal isurace cotributios. People who have ot paid the relevat atioal isurace cotributios may qualify for Employmet ad Support Allowace uder the meas-tested route. People who are receivig Icapacity Beefit will iitially be uaffected by the itroductio of Employmet ad Support Allowace. However, there are plas to move all claimats oto Employmet ad Support Allowace. Icome Support (MT) This is a meas-tested beefit for people uder 60 o a low icome. It is iteded to cover your basic livig expeses. Icome Support is for people who do ot have to sig o for work, such as carers ad loe parets. If you are uemployed ad eed to sig o for work, you ca claim Jobseeker s Allowace istead (see page 15). You ca claim Icome Support if your savigs ad capital are worth 16,000 or less. You caot usually get Icome Support if you work more tha 16 hours a week (or if your parter works more tha 24 hours a week). If you receive Icome Support, the amout will ot be reduced if you or your parter claim Disability Livig Allowace (see page 11) or Attedace Allowace (see page 23) i fact, you may become eligible for more.

11 10 Help for people of workig age May factors will be take ito accout whe you claim Icome Support, such as: your icome your age your housig costs your health your savigs ad ivestmets the umber of hours you work the umber of people i your household your persoal circumstaces, such as beig a carer or loe paret. Icome Support is made up of the followig: Persoal allowaces These are paymets for livig expeses for you ad your parter. If you have depedet childre you should claim Child Tax Credit as well (see page 44). Premiums This is a extra amout that is paid because of special circumstaces, for example, if you are a carer, or have a disability. Housig costs This helps with Coucil Tax (Coucil Tax Beefit), ret (Housig Beefit, Local Housig Allowace) or mortgage iterest paymets (see pages 28 to 30 for more details). Icome Support also acts as a passport to other beefits, such as free school meals (see page 44), free prescriptios (see page 34), full Housig Beefit ad Coucil Tax Beefit (see page 28) ad certai paymets from the Social Fud (see page 58).

12 Help for people of workig age 11 How ca I claim? Cotact your local Jobcetre Plus or social security office for a claim form, or see Disability Livig Allowace (NMT/NC) This beefit is for people uder 65 who have difficulty walkig or lookig after themselves (or both). For example, if you eed help to cook a meal, walk outdoors or dress yourself, you could be eligible for Disability Livig Allowace (DLA). You may also be eligible if you eed someoe to keep a eye o you, for example, because you have a metal health coditio. To qualify, you eed to have had difficulty walkig or lookig after yourself for at least three moths. These difficulties should be expected to last for at least the ext six moths. Disability Livig Allowace is awarded for a set time, or idefiitely. Disability Livig Allowace is made up of: care compoet (for difficulties with lookig after yourself) mobility compoet (for difficulties with walkig or gettig aroud). The amout of Disability Livig Allowace you receive depeds o how much help or supervisio you eed to walk or take care of yourself (or both). You do ot have to be gettig the help to qualify. You should also kow the followig: Whe you claim Disability Livig Allowace, your icome ad savigs are ot take ito accout. If you are receivig other beefits, they will ot be reduced if you are awarded Disability Livig Allowace, ad may icrease. You may also become eligible for a extra beefit, such as Icome Support, Housig ad Coucil Tax Beefit if you are awarded Disability Livig Allowace. People who are workig ca claim Disability Livig Allowace.

13 12 Help for people of workig age Termial illess If you are termially ill, you ca apply for Disability Livig Allowace uder the Special Rules. Uder these rules, you do ot eed to meet the three ad six moth qualifyig coditios metioed o page 11. Your claim will be dealt with quickly ad you will receive the Disability Livig Allowace care compoet at the highest rate. You may also be eligible for the mobility compoet if you have difficulty walkig. All ew Special Rules claims for Disability Livig Allowace will be reviewed after three years. Mobility compoet This is paid at two rates, depedig o how much help or supervisio you eed whe walkig: the lower rate of a week the higher rate of a week. Childre who have difficulty with walkig ca become etitled to the higher rate from the age of three. The lower rate ca be paid for childre aged five ad over who eed extra guidace or supervisio whe walkig. Care compoet To qualify for the care compoet, you do ot eed to have a carer. It is the care you eed that makes you eligible for Disability Livig Allowace, ot the care you get. For example, you could be eligible for the care compoet because you fid it difficult to get out of bed, have a bath or cook yourself a meal. The care compoet is paid at three rates, depedig o the amout of help ad care you eed: the lower rate of a week the middle rate of a week the higher rate of a week.

14 Help for people of workig age 13 If you qualify for the middle or higher rate care compoet, ad you have a carer, your carer may be etitled to Carer s Allowace (see page 18). If you are receivig Disability Livig Allowace, ad your care or mobility eeds icrease, you may become etitled to a icrease i your Disability Livig Allowace. You eed to make a claim for Disability Livig Allowace before you tur 65, but if you are awarded the beefit it will still be paid to you after you have tured 65. How ca I claim? It s a good idea to get help fillig i the claim form from a experieced adviser. For a applicatio pack, rig the free Beefits Equiry Lie (BEL) o or textphoe You ca also get a pack from your local Jobcetre Plus or social security office, or see Icome Tax refud If you have to give up work ad your icome falls, you may be eligible for a tax refud. How ca I claim? Cotact your local HM Reveue ad Customs Equiry Cetre (details are i the phoe book or see If your circumstaces have chaged, it is also worth askig if you are still payig the correct amout of tax.

15 14 Help for people of workig age Workig Tax Credit (MT) This is a paymet made to workig people o a low icome to top up their earigs. It ca be claimed by sigle people, couples, parets ad people without childre. It is also paid to workig people with a physical or metal disability that puts them at a disadvatage i gettig a job. Workig Tax Credit also icludes paymets towards the cost of childcare. Workig Tax Credit is meas-tested ad you must be aged 16 or over whe you make a claim. You must also be workig at least 16 hours a week. Workig Tax Credit is made up of differet elemets to suit people s differet circumstaces. These iclude a loe paret elemet, a disability elemet, a childcare elemet ad a 50 plus elemet. You may still be able to claim Workig Tax Credit for up to 28 weeks if you are off work due to illess. See also Child Tax Credit (page 44). How ca I claim? You ca rig the Tax Credits Helplie o or textphoe You ca also get applicatio packs for Workig Tax Credit from your local HM Reveue ad Customs (HMRC) Equiry Cetre, your local Jobcetre Plus or social security office. For more iformatio, see Idustrial Ijuries Disablemet Beefit (NMT/NC) You may be eligible for this beefit if you have become ill or disabled as a result of your work. Relevat health coditios iclude asbestos-related diseases such as peumocoiosis, diffuse mesothelioma ad lug cacer. You ca also claim if you are disabled due to a accidet at work.

16 Help for people of workig age 15 How ca I claim? Cotact your social security office or Jobcetre Plus for a claim form, or see Jobseeker s Allowace (MT/NC or NMT/C) If you are uder pesio age ad capable of workig, Jobseeker s Allowace ca give you a weekly icome while you look for work. Advisers at your local Jobcetre or Jobcetre Plus office will give you ogoig help with your job search. If you eed specialist advice due to a illess or disability, ask to see a disability employmet adviser. The Access to Work programme provides support to disabled people ad their employers to help overcome work related obstacles resultig from a disability. Ask to speak to a access to work adviser for more iformatio. How ca I claim? Cotact your local Jobcetre or Jobcetre Plus office to arrage a appoitmet for a New Jobseeker Iterview. You will be set a claim form to fill i ad take to the iterview. Are you sure you re ot isured? Look through your policies ad you may fid that you are covered for loss of icome, medical treatmet, credit cards, mortgage paymets ad other expeses. It s certaily worth checkig!

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18 Help for carers 17 Sue ad Lida s story Sue ad Lida are a couple who are civil parters (a legally recogised same-sex relatioship). Sue, who is 66 ad retired, was diagosed with ski cacer last year. Lida, who is 58, was workig as a teacher at the time but has just give up work to care for Sue full-time. Their icome has dropped as they oly have Sue s pesios comig i ow. They are livig off a week Sue s state pesio of a week, her occupatioal pesio of a week, ad her Attedace Allowace of a week. As well as all their usual outgoigs the mortgage, the car, groceries, bills ad so o Lida has spet a lot of moey travellig to, ad parkig at, the hospital whe visitig Sue. Oe day whe Lida was at the hospital, a urse recommeded she speak to the beefits adviser who was based i the ocology departmet. Lida made a appoitmet with the adviser to fid out if there was aythig she could claim to replace her earigs. She foud that she was etitled to a Carer s Allowace, ad they were also etitled to beefits as a couple: Carer s Allowace Worth a extra a week for Lida Pesio Credit savigs credit Worth a extra a week Pesio Credit guaratee credit Worth a extra a week (icludig a extra premium for Lida beig a carer) Pesio Credit for housig costs Amout depedet o Sue ad Lida s circumstaces Coucil Tax Beefit Amout depedet o Sue ad Lida s circumstaces

19 18 Help for carers The couple s icome icreased from a week to a week whe they claimed all the beefits to which they were etitled. The guaratee credit of Pesio Credit etitled them to free detal ad eye treatmet, fares to hospital for Sue ad free prescriptios for Lida (Sue already gets them free as she is over 60). Lida was also able to claim for a Commuity Care Grat from the Social Fud (see page 58) to cover her travel costs to hospital to visit Sue. Carer s Allowace (NMT/NC) Are you carig for someoe who is receivig the care compoet of Disability Livig Allowace at the middle or higher rate (or Attedace Allowace see page 23)? If so, you may be eligible for Carer s Allowace. You eed to be aged 16 or over ad carig for someoe for at least 35 hours a week to qualify for this beefit. You do t eed to be related to, or livig with, the perso you care for. You ca be workig, but there is a weekly earigs limit of 95 a week after certai deductios (this may chage i October 2009). You caot claim Carer s Allowace if you are studyig full-time (21 hours a week or more). Carer s Allowace is a week, with extra amouts for depedet adults. If you are awarded Carer s Allowace you may also be etitled to the Carer s Premium. This is a extra amout of moey that ca be added to Icome Support, icome-based Jobseeker s Allowace, Housig Beefit, Coucil Tax Beefit ad Pesio Credit. Carer s Allowace overlaps with certai beefits, icludig: Employmet ad Support Allowace cotributio-based State Retiremet pesio

20 Help for carers 19 Widow s ad Bereavemet beefits Materity Allowace Severe Disablemet Allowace Cotributio-based Jobseeker s Allowace. You caot be paid Carer s Allowace if you receive the same amout or more from these overlappig beefits. However, it may still be worth claimig Carer s Allowace because you might become eligible for a meas-tested beefit such as Pesio Credit or Coucil Tax Beefit. If you are already receivig meas-tested beefits, you could receive the Carer s Premium (see opposite). You may also receive a Christmas bous ad Natioal Isurace cotributio credits towards other beefits. Claimig Carer s Allowace ca affect the beefits claimed by the perso you care for. It is a good idea to speak to a beefits adviser (see page 63) who will be able to advise you o the best course of actio for you ad the perso you care for. How ca I claim? For a applicatio pack, rig the free Beefits Equiry Lie (BEL) o or textphoe You ca also get a pack from your local Jobcetre Plus, social security office or Pesio Cetre or see You may be etitled to other fiacial help such as Icome Support, Pesio Credit, disability beefits or help with health costs. Please see the other sectios i this guide which are relevat to your situatio. For more iformatio, speak to a beefits adviser who ca advise you o your etitlemets ad help you with claims.

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22 Help for pesioers 21 Harry s story Harry is 69 ad lives aloe. He was diagosed with prostate cacer three years ago, ad sice the has foud it more ad more difficult to look after himself. Util recetly, he also foud it hard to make eds meet fiacially. His illess brought with it may ew expeses, such as fares to hospital, extra beddig ad ew clothes (after he lost a lot of weight, his old oes o loger fitted him). All Harry had to live o was his retiremet pesio of a week which, after these expeses, did t leave much. Some weeks he had to make very difficult decisios about what he could ad could ot afford. Harry decided to lear more about what he was etitled to. He the successfully applied for the followig: Pesio Credit guaratee credit to top up his state pesio Worth a extra a week A amout for severe disability Worth a extra a week Attedace Allowace at the lower rate Worth a extra a week Housig Beefit ad Coucil Tax Beefit Amout depedig upo Tom s persoal circumstaces Harry s weekly icome icreased from to whe he was awarded Pesio Credit ad Attedace Allowace. Plus, the guaratee credit of Pesio Credit gives Harry free detal ad eye treatmet, ad fares to hospital. He may also be eligible for a Commuity Care Grat. By fidig out exactly what he was etitled to, Harry has icreased his icome ad greatly reduced his stress. Best of all, he ca ow cocetrate fully o his recovery.

23 22 Help for pesioers Remember that if you are still workig, the beefits i the Help for people of workig age sectio (see pages 5 to 15) are also relevat to you. Your etitlemets will also differ if you receive a War Pesio or fiacial support from the Armed Forces Compesatio Scheme ask a beefits adviser what this meas for you. Pesio Credit (MT) Pesio Credit is a meas-tested beefit for people aged 60 ad over, although the age criteria will chage from April It guaratees everyoe aged 60 ad over a weekly icome of at least: if you are sigle if you have a parter. Extra amouts ca be paid if you have special circumstaces, such as if you are a carer or have a severe disability. This part of Pesio Credit is called guaratee credit. Pesio Credit is meas-tested but there is o upper savigs limit. You ca claim Pesio Credit if you are workig, although your earigs will affect how much beefit you receive. If you are 65 ad over ad have savigs, or icome above the basic state pesio level, you may also be eligible for Pesio Credit. This part of Pesio Credit is called the Savigs Credit ad ca icrease your weekly icome by up to: if you are sigle if you have a parter.

24 Help for pesioers 23 May pesioers are etitled to this extra fiacial help, so do check with a beefits adviser. If you receive Pesio Credit, you ca apply for help from the Social Fud (see page 58). If you receive the guaratee credit elemet of Pesio Credit, you will be etitled to other help such as full Housig Beefit ad Coucil Tax Beefit, free detal treatmet ad free prescriptios. How ca I apply? You ca apply by callig the Pesio Credit applicatio lie o freephoe or textphoe You ca also visit for a copy of the applicatio form, which you ca fill i o scree or prit out ad fill i by had, ad post to your pesio cetre free of charge. It s a good idea to get help fillig i the claim form from a experieced beefits adviser. Attedace Allowace (NMT/NC) This beefit is for people aged 65 or over who have difficulty lookig after themselves. You may qualify if, for example, you eed help gettig out of bed, havig a bath or dressig yourself. Attedace Allowace is based o the amout of care you eed, ot the care you receive. You do ot eed to have a carer to be eligible for this beefit. You must have eeded care for at least six moths to qualify for Attedace Allowace. The beefit is paid at two rates: lower rate of a week for people who eed help durig the day or at ight higher rate of a week for people who eed help both durig the day ad at ight.

25 24 Help for pesioers There is o help for mobility problems. If you are aged uder 65, you should claim Disability Livig Allowace istead of Attedace Allowace (see page 11). You should also kow the followig: your icome ad savigs are ot take ito accout for Attedace Allowace you ca claim Attedace Allowace if you are workig you do ot eed to pay atioal isurace cotributios to claim Attedace Allowace if you are awarded Attedace Allowace your other beefits will ot be reduced. They may actually icrease or you may become eligible for aother beefit, such as Pesio Credit. Termial illess You ca apply for Attedace Allowace uder the Special Rules if you are termially ill. Uder these rules you do t eed to meet the six moth qualifyig coditios. Your claim will be dealt with quickly ad you will receive the beefit at the highest rate. All ew Special Rules claims for Attedace Allowace will be reviewed after three years. How ca I claim? For a applicatio pack, rig the free Beefits Equiry Lie (BEL) o or textphoe You ca also get a pack from your local Jobcetre Plus or social security office, or see

26 Help for pesioers 25 Also see Carer s Allowace (page 18) ad Icome Tax refud (page 13) Are you sure you re ot isured? Look through your policies ad you may fid that you are covered for loss of icome, medical treatmet, credit cards, mortgage paymets ad other expeses. It s certaily worth checkig!

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28 Help with housig costs 27 Joh ad Maria s story Joh ad Maria are a married couple i their 30s. They live i a reted flat, although they have bee savig hard for a deposit o a flat of their ow. They have maaged to save 5,000 so far. However, Joh s recet diagosis with acute leukaemia put a serious obstacle i the way of their plas for the future. While udergoig treatmet he had to stop work, reducig his icome to Statutory Sick Pay just a week. The couple also kew that Statutory Sick Pay oly lasts for up to 28 weeks. Maria works as a hairdresser ad is paid at a low hourly rate. But if Maria stopped work to look after Joh, how would they pay the ret? The couple decided to talk to a beefits adviser about the fiacial help that might be available to them. Maria was able to stop work to care for Joh as they were able to claim a rage of beefits: Employmet ad Support Allowace Worth a extra a week (for Joh) after his Statutory Sick Pay has ru out Disability Livig Allowace Worth a extra a week (for Joh) Icome-related Employmet ad Support Allowace Worth a extra a week Housig Beefit ad Coucil Tax Beefit Amout depedig o Joh ad Maria s persoal circumstaces Carer s Allowace Worth a extra a week (for Maria) Joh ad Maria s weekly icome is ow ad they are savig moey o ret ad Coucil Tax. Their Employmet ad Support Allowace etitles them to free prescriptios, hospital fares ad detal ad eye care.

29 28 Help with housig costs Now Joh ad Maria kow they ca stay i their home, the relief is tremedous. You too may be etitled to the followig beefits to help with your housig costs. Housig Beefit (MT) If you are o a low icome, ad livig i reted accommodatio, this beefit helps with your ret. You ca claim Housig Beefit if your savigs ad capital are worth 16,000 or less. Housig Beefit is hadled by your local authority (coucil). You do ot have to be a coucil teat to qualify for this beefit. I certai cases, studets ca be eligible for Housig Beefit. However, from April 2010 claimats will ot receive more LHA tha they have to pay i ret. How ca I claim? Cotact your local authority (coucil) to ask for a form. If you are claimig Icome Support or Jobseeker s Allowace, your applicatio pack will iclude a claim form for Housig Beefit. Discretioary housig paymets If you are etitled to Housig or Coucil Tax Beefit, ad you eed extra fiacial help to meet your housig costs, you may be able to claim a discretioary housig paymet from your local authority (coucil). Cotact them for details of how to make a claim.

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