There are three areas of benefits and payments, which you and/or your disabled child may be entitled to.
- Direct payments - given to you as a parent of a disabled child to pay for a service your child may need, instead of us arranging that service.
- Financial benefits – including the Disability Living Allowance, Carers Allowance, Income Support or Child Tax Credit, the Disabled Child Premium and the Enhanced Disability premium (child rate).
- Adaptations – a Disabled Facilities Grant may be available to help you make necessary alterations to your home.
A disabled child is eligible for a direct payment if he/she is eligible for a service. Payments will be paid into a Pre Paid Account (PPA) which you will be able to use in the same way as a current account. Eligibility is determined by assessment of the child and family's needs. If you are interested in direct payments, talk to your social worker or family support worker. For more information and advice contact Surrey Independent Living Council (SILC) and refer to their leaflets about direct payments on the SILC Fast Facts page.
Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
This is a tax-free benefit for children and adults who need help with personal care or have walking difficulties because they are physically or mentally disabled. Visit Gov.uk for more information, eligibility and how to claim DLA.
If you care for your child for more than 35 hours a week and they receive DLA, you could be entitled to a carer's grant (the grant is available to anyone who spends more than 35 hours a week caring for someone who is disabled). Visit Gov.uk for more information, eligibility and how to claim carer's allowance and read our money matters for carers advice page.
Income Support or Child Tax Credit
Depending on your income you may be able to claim Income Support or Child Tax Credit. Working Tax Credit can help with childcare costs; the childcare must be Ofsted registered. Call 0845 300 3900 for advice or a childcare claim form.
The Disabled Child Premium
If you are responsible for a disabled child under 19, or in certain circumstances under 20, you will get this premium if either:
- The child is getting Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
- The child is registered blind.
The Enhanced Disability Premium (child rate)
If your disabled child receives the highest-rate care component of DLA, you may get the enhanced disabled child premium. It isn't available if your child has more than £3,000 capital.
Help and information
The Contact A Family helpline can give you more information about your entitlement to any of these benefits.
You can apply for a Disabled Facilities Grant from your local borough/district council if you need to adapt your home for your child, to provide better freedom of movement and/or to provide essential facilities within it. For families of disabled children under 18 there is no means testing. An occupational therapist looks at each circumstance and recommends the adaptation(s) needed. Gov.uk provides more information on eligibility and how to claim.