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Attendance Allowance – Make sure you are not missing out

21st May 2020

More of my time these days is spent in visiting our Clients in their own homes to carry out reviews because otherwise they would struggle to visit us at our offices in Horsmonden.

I increasingly come across situations in which clients either do not know about Attendance Allowance or don’t think they will qualify because they feel either they own too much value in assets or they have strong income. Others worry about the tax consequences of receiving this benefit.

This is absolutely wrong - Attendance Allowance is tax free and is not affected by any savings or income you might have.
You might be entitled to it if:

  • You’re aged 65 or over and need help with personal care because of illness or disability (this could be a physical or mental disability or a learning difficulty).
  • Your disability means you need help caring for yourself or supervision to ensure the safety of yourself or others.
  • Help with personal tasks does not mean help with things like housework or gardening or other tasks around the home.
Personal tasks means things like:

  • Getting in or out of bed
  • Having a bath or shower
  • Getting dressed
  • Being reminded or encouraged to eat or drink
  • Managing stairs
  • Getting in and out of chairs
You must have been in need of care and support for at least six months at the time you apply. Application forms are not straightforward but a number of Charities are able to help you complete your application.

Attendance Allowance is based on the care you need, not the level of care you’re currently receiving. So even if you don’t receive support from a carer at the moment, you might still be entitled to this benefit.

If you are terminally ill you can claim Attendance Allowance immediately and not have to wait six months.

You’ll get a lower rate if you need help in the day or night and a higher rate if you need help both day and night. It’s paid at 2 different rates and how much you get depends on the level of care that you need because of your disability.

So you could get £59.70 or £89.15 tax free per week (for the 2020/21 tax year) to help with personal support. Don’t miss out on this tax free, non means tested benefit. Ask about this benefit at your next review or if your need is more urgent please contact our office.

The levels and bases of taxation, and reliefs from taxation, can change at any time. The value of any tax relief depends on individual circumstances.

David Summers | APFS
Chartered Financial Planner

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