Brain Injuries generally occur suddenly and without warning. For those who have suffered a brain injury and their families, getting the right benefits can be essential to secure a regular income to meet the day to day cost of living, both in the short and long term.
The welfare benefits system is undoubtedly complex; however, it can provide support in relation to care and mobility as well as income, and families should consider applying as soon as possible because the process can be protracted.
If your head injury means you are unable to work in the long or short term then you may be entitled to the following benefits:-
- Statutory Sick Pay is available for a limited period for those that are still employed but unable to work.
- New style Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) is available for those who are unable to work through illness or disability and have paid enough National Insurance.
- Income Support (IS) is only available for claimants who get the severe disability premium, or are entitled to it, or received it in the last month.
- Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is a benefit for children who have mobility problems or extra requirements for care.
- Attendance Allowance (AA) is available for those of state pension age who have care needs.
- Personal Independence Payment (PIP) has been introduced to replace DLA for new claimants of working age. The qualifying criteria for PIP includes the effects of the condition, rather than the condition itself, and payments will be reviewed regularly. People of working age who currently receive DLA will be migrated to PIP; people over the age of 65 will continue to receive DLA/PIP as long as they qualify.
- Carer’s Allowance is paid to anyone who has substantial caring responsibilities for a person with a disability. There are certain qualifying criteria for the person providing the care and the individual being cared for.
- Housing and Council Tax Benefit are both means-tested benefits that contribute towards the cost of rent and Council Tax.
- Child Tax Credit is also available for those with dependant children up to a certain age.
- Universal Credit has replaced Jobseeker’s Allowance, Housing Benefit, Working Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, Employment and Support Allowance and Income Support for the vast majority of claimants, including those looking for work, those unable to work due to illness or disability, and those caring for someone.
The rates for benefits vary depending on your circumstances. There is a basic rate for individuals or couples and additional elements paid based on age, disability and dependent children.
For those at the qualifying age for state retirement pension and on a low income, you may be eligible for the guarantee element of pension credit. If you are in a mixed-age relationship and one is younger than state pension age, you will have to claim Universal Credit instead.
The New State Pension was introduced for everyone reaching state pension age on or after 6 April 2016. This new benefit is aimed at simplifying the pension system.
These are just an example of what may be available to you. Depending on your circumstances there may be extra help for mortgage relief, local authority care and certain NHS services.
LAWS – legal and welfare advice
What is the Brain Injury Group?
Brain Injury Group is a free service designed to connect those affected by a brain injury (whether there is a claim or not) to a range of experts who may be able to offer advice and assistance.
If you’d like to find out more about the work of Brain Injury Group, you are at the right place! You can follow the links below to:
- Find a Brain Injury Group recommended brain injury solicitor
- Get free legal and welfare advice
- Find out more about funding care for a brain injured person
- A-Z Directory of goods and services
- The latest brain injury news and useful articles
- Get in touch with us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Brain Injury Group exists to support individuals and families affected by brain injury and the health and social care professionals working in this specialist field. Our mission is to provide anyone affected by brain injury with access to advice on legal, financial and welfare benefit issues delivered by proven experts in the field who have been chosen not only for their skills and knowledge, but also for their passion and dedication to helping people.
As well as providing legal and welfare advice, Brain Injury Group provide training for legal, health and social care professionals. View our award winning Brain Injury Group brain injury training events.
The Brain Injury Group brain injury directory
How can Brain Injury Group help you?
If you would like advice about welfare benefits, making a will, bringing a brain injury claim, capacity, deputyships, managing the award of compensation or any other aspect of brain injury welfare, legal or financial advice, we have specialist brain injury solicitors and Court of Protection solicitors who can assist.
You can find full details of Brain Injury Group members on our website or there are several ways to get in touch: