Managing your tenancy
You can now login to our new resident’s portal at www.hanover.scot/residents. This gives you the chance to pay your rent, update your contact details, check your account, find out your Housing Officer’s details or check on maintenance work for your property. You will need your account reference number to register. If you are unable to locate this you can call our freephone number on 0800 111 4646 and a staff member will provide this information.
If you find that you are having difficulty managing your monthly rent payment, please contact your Housing Officer on 0800 111 4646 in the first instance before an arrear becomes unmanageable.
You call also contact our Welfare Rights Officer, Hailie Johnston, for assistance via:
phone 0131 370 7457, email firstname.lastname@example.org or complete this referral form.
Maximising your income and managing your bills
Are you getting all the money and financial support you are entitled to? Below are some agencies that can assist you with maximising your income.
Financial health check
The first thing to do is get a financial health check. Citizens Advice Scotland have a Money Map service that can help you find sources of online support to increase your income, reduce your bills and ease the costs of daily living. You can access this service online at www.moneymap.scot.
To potentially increase your income, you may consider carrying out a benefit check to ensure that you are receiving all the welfare benefits you may be entitled to. We recommend using the calculator at www.entitledto.co.uk or www.turn2us.org.uk.
They will ask for the following information:
Your Financial Situation
- Details of any benefits you’re getting, i.e. what benefit and how much you get;
- Details of any savings you have and any other ‘capital’ investments, e.g. shares;
- Details of any income that’s not from work or benefits, e.g. from a pension or insurance plan.
- Do you have a partner? In order to carry our accurate calculations, we will need your partners details and their income from work or benefits;
- Health: Do you, your partner have a health condition or disability? We will need to know details of this, along with any benefit you and your family may be in receipt of.
Your Housing Situation
- The type of accommodation you have, e.g. housing association tenant; and the number of bedrooms the property has.
- How much rent and service charge you pay.
If you do not have access to the internet, please call Hailie Johnston, Welfare Rights Officer on 0131 370 7457 for assistance.
Help managing your finances
Money and debt management is a regulated service and must be carried out by qualified individuals. To qualify for energy grants, it is expected that you have received some form of advice from a recognised agency.
If you would like advice about money and debt, you can get help from:
Advice Direct Scotland www.moneyadvice.scot freephone 0808 196 2316
Christians Against Poverty www.capuk.org freephone 0800 328 0006
Citizens Advice Scotland www.cas.org.uk freephone 0800 028 1456
National Debtline www.nationaldebtline.org freephone 0808 808 4000
Broadband and mobile social tariffs
The Government has called on all broadband providers to offer and promote social tariffs which are discounted broadband and mobile deals for people on Universal Credit, Pension Credit or other benefits.
The exact requirements depend on the broadband provider in question – some only offer social tariffs to Universal Credit recipients, while others extend eligibility to those on Income Support, Jobseeker’s Allowance and Employment & Support Allowance. If you would be interested in exploring this further you can find details at www.ofcom.org.uk or you can contact your current provider to discuss moving to a social tariff.
Help with housing costs
We are always here to help if you are having issues with your housing costs, such as paying your monthly rent and other charges. The first step is to check if you are getting all the housing cost benefits you are entitled to, as detailed below.
Managing your tenancy – How we can help
Speak to us about any issues with your rent payments. If you find that you are having difficulty managing your monthly rent payment, please contact your Housing Officer on 0800 111 4646 in the first instance.
Housing Benefit / Universal Credit Housing Costs
Housing Benefit / Universal Credit Housing Costs are means-tested benefits for people who have a low income and modest savings to help with rent and some service charges.
To be eligible for Housing Benefit you:
- will have reached State Pension age
- will have a low income or be claiming other benefits
- will either have less than £16,000 in savings or be getting the guarantee part of Pension Credit
- will be receiving ‘care, support or supervision’ from you housing provider – for example if you live in very sheltered housing
To claim housing benefit please contact your local council.
If you receive Pension Credit, the Pension Service should contact your local council to let them know you are entitled to Housing Benefit.
To be eligible for Universal Credit Housing Costs you:
- will be of working age i.e., under State Pension age
- will live in general needs or amenity, housing or, you will live in sheltered housing AND you will not be getting ‘care, support or supervision’. *
* Most Local Authority areas will no longer pay Housing Benefit for Sheltered accommodation so you should apply for Universal Credit Housing Costs in that instance. If you have an additional bedroom that is not occupied, Universal Credit will reduce the amount they pay you. This is called Bedroom Tax. If this happens you should apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) via your local council to cover the shortfall.
If you already get Universal Credit, apply for housing payments in your online account.
If you are new to Universal Credit, apply at https://www.gov.uk/universal-credit
Discretionary Housing Payment
If you receive Housing Benefit or Universal Credit Housing Costs, but still have problems paying your rent you may be able to claim a Discretionary Housing Payment from your local council. The Discretionary Housing Payment fund is available for individuals affected by Bedroom Tax and the Benefit Cap.
Support for Mortgage interest
If you receive certain means-tested benefits such as Pension Credit you may be eligible for help towards your housing costs including the interest on your mortgage or a loan for essential repairs or improvements to your home. This is available as a loan which is secured on your home. For information see the Government website www.gov.uk/support-for-mortgage-interest.
Council Tax Reduction
Council Tax Reduction can help people who have low incomes with the cost of Council Tax. It is means tested, looking at your and your partner’s income and savings.
To be eligible for a Council Tax reduction:
- you should have a low income or be claiming other benefits
- either have less than £16,000 in savings or be getting the guarantee part of Pension Credit
- Discounts of 25% for single person households exist, as do discounts for people who are severely mentally impaired because of: a degenerative brain disorder (e.g., Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease); a stroke; other forms of dementia; learning disability; severe or chronic mental illness.
If you receive certain means-tested benefits, for example, Pension Credit, you will automatically be entitled to full Council Tax Reduction unless other people live with you. You will still be liable for your water and sewerage charges.
For more information visit: Age Scotland – Council Tax and Council Tax reduction guide April 2023
Cost of Living Payments 2023-24
You could get up to three different types of additional cost of living payment, depending on your circumstances.
This year’s Cost of Living Payment of £900 is paid in three instalments, if you get a qualifying means-tested benefit, including Universal Credit, Pension Credit or tax credits. No exact dates for payment are available, however it is expected that there is payment of:
- £301 – during Spring 2023
- £300 – during Autumn 2023
- £299 – during Spring 2024
There is also:
- a £150 Disability Cost of Living Payment, during Summer 2023, if you get a disability benefit
- a £300 Pensioner Cost of Living Payment, during Winter 23/24, if you’re entitled to the Winter Fuel Payment
Energy advice and help with fuel costs
You will no doubt have heard lots in the news about the cost of living crisis and the rising fuel bills which are likely to impact us all. We want you to know that there is help and support available.
Keep your property in good repair
Ensuring that your property is wind and watertight is the first step to ensure that your property is managing energy efficiently. Please contact 0800 111 4646 to report any defects to your property, such as drafty windows, as a priority to help keep your energy costs down.
Energy advice and advocacy – where to turn
Home Energy Scotland
Almost everyone can get some form of help from Home Energy Scotland. This is a free service funded by the Scottish Government. They can provide:
- Free, impartial advice about energy-saving options for your home.
- Support to reduce your energy bills while staying warm, including switching energy tariffs.
- A home energy check – you can do this over the phone, online or an advisor can visit you at home.
- Guidance on financial support, including: benefits checks; incentives; discounted energy rates; and help with any outstanding fuel debt you may have.
- Advice and referrals for grants, or loans to help fund energy efficiency improvements.
- Referrals to the Warm Home Discount scheme – this could get you a discount on your electricity bill.
To find out how Home Energy Scotland can help you, call freephone 0808 808 2282 or email email@example.com. Alternatively, visit www.homeenergyscotland.org or follow @HomeEnergyScotland on Facebook.
Citizens Advice Scotland
Citizens Advice Scotland also has a wealth of information on your energy supply at www.cas.org.uk/spotlight/energy.
Contact www.cas.org.uk or phone 0800 028 1456.
They provide free, practical advice and information on energy-related matters to the citizens of Scotland at www.energyadvice.scot or 0808 196 8660.
We can provide advice and information if you:
- Have an energy enquiry relating to your supplier (no matter how complex)
- Wish to understand your energy supplier’s complaints process
- Are experiencing any problems with your energy bills
Help with energy costs
Contact your supplier as soon as you can if you are worried about paying your energy bills or are in debt to your supplier.
Suppliers must work with you to agree on a payment plan you can afford under Ofgem rules. This includes reviewing a plan you have agreed before.
You can ask for:
- a review of your payments and debt repayments
- payment breaks or reductions
- more time to pay
- access to hardship funds
- advice on how to use less energy
- Priority Service registration – a free support service if you are in a vulnerable situation
If you can’t agree on a way to pay, get help from Citizens Advice or Advice Direct Scotland. Someone at their Extra Help Unit could take on your case if you are in a vulnerable situation.
Citizens Advice – Call 0808 223 1133 or use their online webchat at www.cas.org.uk. For textphone, dial 18001 followed by the helpline number.
Advice Direct Scotland – Visit the energyadvice.scot website, call 0808 196 8660 or use their online webchat.
If you’re in debt to your energy supplier, you might be able to get a grant from a charitable trust to help pay your energy debts. Your application is more likely to be successful if you’ve received debt advice.
Home Heating Advice Scotland fund has been established to assist Scottish citizens identified as ‘self-rationing’ energy. The fund can help make payments towards future energy bills, depending on the customer’s situation. It can also assist towards payment outstanding debts the customer may have with their energy provide. You must have received debt advice to qualify. You can access more information at https://homeheatingadvice.scot/householdfaqs/
Winter Fuel Payments
A Winter Fuel Payment is an annual tax-free lump sum to help with heating costs. It is usually paid automatically to most people who are 66 or over. If you need to make a claim contact the Winter Fuel Payment helpline on 0800 731 0160 before 31st March the following spring.
Winter Heating Payment
Winter Heating Payment has replaced the Cold Weather Payment that used to be made to people receiving Pension Credit if it was below freezing for a week. Winter Heating Payment is a one-off annual automatic payment of £50.00 from Social Security Scotland.
Hanover's Fuel Funds
In response to the current Cost-of-Living challenges, our Welfare Rights service has focused on developing financial support for our customers, where most needed. This has included producing information leaflets, training Housing/Admin Officers to assist with customer benefit checks and our Fuel Support Funds.
Since April 2022, our Welfare Rights Officer has distributed £118,573 to customers through various fuel funds, partly funded through grants and the remainder donated by Hanover.
Further hardship funding will be available from April 2023, and we are working with Housing Officers to identify those in need.
Please contact your Housing Officer if you are experiencing hardship due to energy costs or email firstname.lastname@example.org for further assistance. From Monday 17th April, you can also apply directly to the Fuel Fund via this online form.
All customers can apply, but priority will be given to individuals who have not previously accessed funding from Hanover.
Our hardship grants are paid directly into your bank account to ensure that customers can access the funding without the administrative costs associated with vouchers and alternative schemes.
Please be aware that due to data protection laws, we may need to contact you directly to confirm your bank details, even if we already hold these for other purposes.
Hanover’s welfare rights service will continue to seek and apply for available grants and funding to support customers.
Energy saving advice
With the cost of living on the rise, there’s never been a better time to cut your energy bills. We’ve put together some tips to help you and your family reduce your energy usage in every room of your home.
Home heating | keeping warm with less energy
Over half of our energy bills spend goes on heating and hot water. It’s important to look at our home heating habits and see if there are small changes, we can make to reduce our heating bills.
- If you can, turn down your thermostat. Just one degree lower will save you money. Set a timer on your thermostat, if you have one, for your heating to come on only when you need it.
- Don’t heat empty rooms. If you have individual radiator thermostats this means you can adjust the temperature in each room accordingly.
- Keep doors between adjoining rooms shut. This way, you stop the heat from escaping.
- Run your heating for an hour less each day. Even using a little less energy each day adds up to savings over time.
- If relevant, bleed your radiators. Trapped air can make your radiators less efficient, so they’ll be slower to heat up. You can tell that a radiator needs to be bled if it is not evenly warm at the top and bottom.
- Keep the heat in. Simply closing your blinds or curtains in the evening can also stop the heat loss by up to 17%. Just be sure your curtains don’t cover the radiators
Kitchen | reduce your energy and water usage when cooking and washing up
- The microwave is generally the most efficient way to heat up and cook food – it’s quicker and has a smaller area to heat when compared to an oven, which means that the heat is more focused on whatever’s being cooked.
- Use energy efficient appliances such as a slow cooker or air fryer to cook your meals.
- If using the oven consider batch cooking your meals and freezing them. This will reduce the amount of time your appliance is in use.
- Use smaller pans. The smaller your pan, the less heat you’ll need. Using the right size pan for your meal means less energy wasted.
- Keep saucepan lids on. Your food will heat up faster.
- Defrost your fridge freezer regularly to prevent it from using more energy than needed.
- Only boil the water you need. Over-filling the kettle wastes water, money and time. Instead, only boil as much water as you need.
- Reduce washing machine use by avoiding washing half loads whenever possible, but if it’s unavoidable, you should use the half load programme. Washing clothes at a lower temperature also uses less energy.
Bathroom | reduce your water and energy bills
- Consider water wastage. 12% of a typical gas-heated home’s energy bill is from heating the water for showers, baths and water from the hot tap.
- Keeping your shower time to just 4 minutes could save a typical household £95 a year on their energy bills.
Home lighting and electronics | keep the lights on for less
- Change your light bulbs. Fitting LED bulbs is a great way to reduce energy use at home.
- Switch off the lights. Every time you leave a room, switch the lights off.
- Switch off all electronic devices when not in use. Even when they’re in standby mode they are still using electricity.
Smart meters | track your usage to save money
It’s important now, more than ever, to stay in control of your energy. With a smart meter, you’ll easily be able to track your energy usage and see where you can save so that you can lower your bills and your carbon footprint.
Smart benefits include:
- Upgrade your meter at no extra cost
- You’re in control – you can see the cost of your energy
- Receive more accurate bills
- If you have use cards or keys, you can top up online
Not every location has the smart meter technology available but contact your energy provider if you would like a smart meter.
Pension age benefits
State Pension is a regular payment from the UK Government that most people can claim when they reach their State Pension age. It is based on your National Insurance contributions or National Insurance credits. State Pension age is 66 for both men and women until May 2026, when it will gradually increase to 67 by March 2028.
Check your own State Pension age by using the calculator at www.gov.uk/state-pension-age.
For more information check out Age Scotland’s State Pension guide: Age Scotland – State Pension guide March 2023.
Entitlement to the Guarantee Credit part of Pension Credit will make you eligible for other benefits and cost of living payments so it’s worth looking into even if you’re not sure.
Pension Credit is a means-tested benefit for older people who are living on an income below a level set by Government. There are two parts to Pension Credit: Guarantee Credit and Savings Credit. If you and your partner have reached State Pension age, Guarantee Credit will top up your income to a guaranteed minimum level, currently £201.05 per week if you are single and £305.85 if you are a couple. If you are a couple you both need to be State Pension age to make a new claim.
To claim Pension Credit, you can either:
- Claim online at www.gov.uk/pension-credit/how-to-claim
- Call the Pension Credit claim line on 0800 99 1234 . They’ll fill in the application for you over the phone.
It can be helpful to have the following details to hand before you get started:
- your National Insurance number
- your bank account details
- information about your income, savings, and investments
- information about your pension (if you have one)
- details of any housing costs you have (such as rent and service charge)
- your partner’s details if you have a partner
These rates of Pension Credit may be higher if you receive:
- Attendance Allowance
- The daily living component of Personal Independence Payment
- The daily living component of Adult Disability Payment
- Disability Living Allowance middle or higher rate care components
- Carer’s Allowance (and also if you have an underlying entitlement to Carer’s Allowance but do not receive it because your State Pension is more than £76.75)
- Constant Attendance Allowance paid with a War Pension or with Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit or Armed Forces Independence Payment
Savings Credit can be claimed by some people who reached their State Pension age before April 2016.
For more information visit the following links:
Age Scotland – Pension Credit guide March 2023
Universal Credit / working age benefits
This section details the benefits that those of working-age may be eligible to, including Universal Credit, Jobseeker’s Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance, Statutory Sick Pay and Bereavement Support Payments.
Universal Credit is the means-tested benefit for working age people who have a low income whether they are in or out of work.
It is replacing:
- Child Tax Credit
- Housing Benefit for working age people
- Income related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income Support
- Working Tax Credit.
Like the benefits it replaces, it includes some additional amounts for carers and for some people unable to work due to sickness or disability. It also includes help towards the costs of looking after children.
To claim Universal Credit you must:
- be 18 or over
- be under State Pension age
- have a low income and capital below £16,000
- be present, habitually resident and have the right to reside in Great Britain
- not be in education
- accept a Claimant Commitment (what is expected of you in return for receiving Universal Credit).
If you are already claiming one of the benefits that is being replaced by Universal Credit, you will eventually be moved onto Universal Credit.
You can claim Universal Credit online at www.gov.uk/apply-universal-credit. It is paid monthly in arrears calculated on your income the previous month. You can choose to be paid twice a month if you live in Scotland.
If you require assistance with your claim, the Citizens Advice Bureau Help to Claim service can help you to claim Universal Credit. Or you can call 0800 0232581.
Jobseeker’s Allowance is a benefit for people who are under State Pension age, unemployed and available for work or working less than 16 hours per week.
There are two forms of Jobseeker’s Allowance:
- Contribution based or ‘new style’ Jobseeker’s Allowance depends on your National Insurance contribution record and it is paid at a flat rate of £84.80 for people aged 25 and over. It is paid for a maximum of 182 days in any one period of unemployment. The amount you receive may be affected by any earnings, or by an occupational or personal pension.
- Income based Jobseeker’s Allowance is being replaced by Universal Credit.
To claim Jobseeker’s Allowance contact your local Jobcentre Plus for advice or claim online at: www.gov.uk/jobseekers-allowance/how-to-claim
Employment and Support Allowance
Employment and Support Allowance is for working age people who have limited capability for work due to ill health or disability. You will need a medical certificate, now called a “fit note”, from your GP before you can make a claim.
There are two main forms of Employment and Support Allowance:
- Contribution based or ‘new style’ Employment and Support Allowance depends on your National Insurance contribution record.
- Income related Employment and Support Allowance is being replaced by Universal Credit.
Most people who make new claims for Employment and Support Allowance will have an assessment phase of 13 weeks. A points based assessment looks at whether someone is either well enough to work, has ‘limited capability for work’ or ‘limited capability for work related activity’.
If you qualify for Employment and Support Allowance you will move from the assessment phase to the main phase. The number of points you qualify for affects whether you have to do certain things, such a prepare yourself for work or have interviews about looking for work, to continue to qualify for the benefit.
To claim ‘new style’ Employment and Support Allowance call 0800 055 6688 or visit www.gov.uk/employment-support-allowance/how-to-claim.
The number of points you receive when you are assessed will affect how long ‘new style’ employment and support allowance can be paid for.
Income Support, Working Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit
These benefits are gradually being replaced by Universal Credit.
Statutory Sick Pay
Statutory Sick Pay is the minimum amount an employer must pay an employee who is incapable of work due to an illness, disability, or industrial injury. It is paid at £109.40 per week, normally after 3 waiting days and can be paid for up to 28 weeks. It does not depend on your National Insurance contribution record but you must be earning at least the lower earnings limit, which is £123 per week from April 2023. Statutory Sick Pay should be paid in the same way as your wages or salary; you may receive it as part of contractual sick pay from your employer.
Bereavement Support Payment is the benefit for working age people whose spouse or civil partner has died.
There is an initial payment of £2,500 (£3,500 for people who have dependent children) and up to 18 monthly instalments of £100 (£350 for people with dependent children).
To claim Bereavement Support Payment, contact the Department for Work and Pensions Bereavement Service on 0800 731 0469, get a form from your local Jobcentre Plus, or see the www.gov.uk website for more information.
Family related benefits
Best Start Grant and Best Start Foods
Best Start Grant and Best Start Foods are payments that help towards the costs of being pregnant or looking after a child. They’re part of the 5 family payments you may be able to get from Social Security Scotland, along with Scottish Child Payment. For more information www.mygov.scot/best-start-grant-best-start-foods
Time off and pay when you have or adopt a child
- Maternity pay and leave
- Maternity Allowance
- Pregnancy and Baby Payment
- Paternity pay and leave
- Shared Parental Leave and Pay
- Adoption pay and leave
- Unpaid parental leave
Child Benefit / Payments
- Child Benefit
- Scottish Child Payment*
- Child Benefit when your child turns 16
- Child Benefit tax calculator
- High Income Child Benefit Charge
*Scottish Child Payment is available to families who live in Scotland, get certain benefits or payments, and contains the main carer for a child under the age of 16. The payment has increased from £20 to £25 a week and is paid every 4 weeks. About 407,000 children are in families eligible.
The parents and guardians can apply for the benefit whether or not they work, and are eligible if they receive Universal Credit, Child Tax Credit, Working Tax Credit and income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA).
To apply, visit www.mygov.scot/scottish-childpayment/how-to-apply or call Social Security Scotland on 0800 182 2222. Applicants need to provide their national insurance number, bank details and personal details about themselves and their families. You do not need to apply again if you are already receiving the benefit.
Support for separated families
Support for disabled children
- Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children – Child Disability Payment
- Child Winter Heating Assistance
- Help if you have a disabled child
- Independent Living – Equipment and Adaptations
Help with childcare costs
- Apply for free school meals
- Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA)
- Help with School Clothing Costs
- Job Start Payment
- Guardian’s Allowance
- Support visits if you need help to claim benefits
Disability related benefits
Attendance Allowance is a benefit for people who have reached State Pension age who have a physical or mental disability which means they need care or supervision.
It is tax free and is not means-tested, so you can apply regardless of how much income or savings you have. If you already receive Disability Living Allowance, Personal Independence Payment or Adult Disability Payment when you reach 66 they will continue so you will not need to claim Attendance Allowance.
To qualify for Attendance Allowance you need to show that you need help with your personal care needs, such as getting washed and dressed, or supervision to keep you safe. You do not have to have a carer, you just need to explain why you need help and support. If you have a carer they may be entitled to Carer’s Allowance if your Attendance Allowance claim is successful.
You can decide to spend the money you receive on anything you wish; you do not have to spend the money on paying for care. It is important to explain on the claim form how your disability or long term health condition affects you day to day.
You must have needed care for 6 months before your award can begin but you can make your claim earlier. If you are terminally ill, there is no qualifying period.
Attendance Allowance has 2 rates: The daily living component rate is £68.10 standard and £101.75 enhanced. The mobility component is £26.90 standard and £71.00 enhanced.
To claim Attendance Allowance contact the Attendance Allowance helpline on 0800 731 0122 or visit www.gov.uk/attendance-allowance. You can also contact our Welfare Rights Officer, Hailie Johnston on 0131 370 7457 or at email@example.com to assist you with making an application.
For more information on Attendance Allowance, click here to watch a video from Age Scotland or visit the following website: Constant Attendance Allowance: Overview – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Adult Disability Payment and Personal Independence Payment
The Scottish Government’s next benefit, Adult Disability Payment (ADP), is open for new applications from 29 August 2022. This new payment, to be administered by Social Security Scotland, will replace Personal Independence Payment (PIP), which is currently delivered by the UK Government’s Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
Adults of working age (16-66) with a disability or health condition, who are not already receiving Personal Independence Payment (PIP) or Disability Living Allowance (DLA) should now apply for the Adult Disability Payment (ADP) going forward.
Individuals already receiving PIP or DLA do not need to apply for Adult Disability Payment. Their awards will be transferred automatically to the new Scottish system from August 2022, with no break in entitlement or payment.
If you’d like to apply for Adult Disability benefit you can do this online at www.mygov.scot/adult-disability-payment . You can also contact our Welfare Rights Officer, Hailie Johnston on 0131 370 7457 or at firstname.lastname@example.org to assist you with making an application.
Child Disability Payment and Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for Children
Child Disability Payment (CDP) replaces Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children and young people living in Scotland. You can apply for Child Disability Payment for a disabled child under 16. The disability can be mental or physical. You can also apply for Child Disability Payment if the disabled child does not have a diagnosis.
If you’d like to apply for Child Disability benefit you can do this online at www.mygov.scot/child-disability-payment. You can also contact our Welfare Rights Officer, Hailie Johnston on 0131 370 7457 or at email@example.com to assist you with making an application.
Armed Forces Independence Payment
Service personnel and veterans awarded a Guaranteed Income Payment of 50% or more under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme are eligible for Armed Forces Independence Payment. This is an alternative to Personal Independence Payment (PIP) or Adult Disability Payment (ADP) as you cannot receive both.
For more information please visit: Armed Forces Independence Payment (AFIP) – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Constant Attendance Allowance
If you receive a War Disablement Pension and your disablement is 80% or more, you may be entitled to Constant Attendance Allowance. If you already receive Attendance Allowance, Disability Living Allowance (care component) or Personal Independence Payment or Adult Disability Payment (daily living component), they will be reduced by the amount of any Constant Attendance Allowance you are awarded.
Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit is for people who have been injured in an accident at work or have an industrial disease. You can claim it if you are an employee but not if you are self-employed. The level of disability caused by your accident or industrial disease will be assessed by a Department for Work and Pensions doctor and expressed as a percentage.
You usually have to be assessed as at least 14% disabled to receive any payment. The rate of weekly benefit varies from £41.52 to £207.60 depending on the level of disablement. Industrial Injuries benefits are paid on top of other benefits such as contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance and Carer’s Allowance but they are taken into account as income when calculating means-tested benefits. Industrial Injuries Benefits are not taxable and do not depend on National Insurance contributions.
For more information please visit: Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit: Overview – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Carer’s Allowance is a benefit for people who regularly spend at least 35 hours a week caring for a person who receives:
- Attendance Allowance
- Disability Living Allowance care component at the middle or higher rate
- Personal Independence Payment daily living component
- Adult Disability Payment daily living component
- Armed Forces Independence payment
- Constant Attendance Allowance of £83.04 or more paid with an Industrial Injuries Disablement, War or Disablement Pension under the War Pension scheme
It is £76.75 per week and is taxable. If you are working, you cannot be earning more than £139.00 net per week. Carer’s Allowance has a complicated relationship with other benefits as it is treated as overlapping with some other benefits. This particularly affects people who receive a State Pension.
A claim for Carer’s Allowance can also reduce the benefits of the person you are caring for so you should get advice before applying. In Scotland people who receive Carer’s Allowance also receive a 6 monthly top up payment of Carers Allowance Supplement which is paid automatically by Social Security Scotland.
To claim Carer’s Allowance contact the Carer’s Allowance unit on 0800 731 0297 and ask for a claim form or visit www.gov.uk.carers-allowance.
For more information visit: Age Scotland – Carer’s Allowance guide April 2023
Help with one-off or urgent expenses
Scottish Welfare Fund
The Scottish Welfare Fund helps families and people in Scotland who are on low incomes through Crisis and Community Care Grants.
You can apply for a:
- Crisis Grant – if you’re in financial crisis, you may be able to access emergency funds for essential living costs such as food and heating.
- Community Care Grant – to help you or someone you care for to start to live, or to carry on living, a settled life in the community.
Examples of items you may be awarded are furniture, white goods, and removal costs. To find out more or make an application, visit www.mygov.scot/scottish-welfare-fund to find contact details of your local fund. Alternatively, you can contact your Local Authority direct, and they will complete an application over the telephone.
Foodbanks provide boxes of food donated by the public for those finding it difficult to feed themselves and their families.
If you need emergency food supplies, please contact your local council, or visit your local Citizens Advice Bureau to be referred to a foodbank in your area.
Funeral Support Payment helps pay for funeral costs for a baby, child or adult. This includes babies who were stillborn.
It usually will not cover the full cost of the funeral but it should help pay for some costs. It can be paid either to you or the funeral director who’s helping you plan the funeral.
You may qualify for help with the cost of a funeral if you:
- Are responsible for arranging and paying for the funeral of someone close to you
- Receive a qualifying means tested benefit such as Pension Credit and
- Live in Scotland
For more information call Social Security Scotland on 0800 182 2222.
Short Term Benefit Advance
A Short Term Benefit Advance is an advance of a benefit you have claimed and are waiting to receive and can be paid if you are in financial need. You need to ask the Department for Work and Pensions for the advance and explain why you are in financial hardship. A Short Term Benefit Advance must be repaid, usually by regular deductions from your benefit. For more information visit:
Get an advance on your first benefit payment: Overview – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
A Budgeting Loan is a loan from the Department for Work and Pension’s social fund to help with occasional expenses which are difficult to budget for. To be eligible you must have been in receipt of a qualifying benefit such as Pension Credit for at least 26 weeks. Loans are interest free and normally repaid by deductions from your benefit. Budgeting loans have been replaced by budgeting advances for people who claim Universal Credit. For more information visit:
Budgeting Loans: How they work – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Help with health costs
If you receive Pension Credit, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, income related Employment and Support Allowance, Universal Credit, Income Support or you have a valid NHS tax credit exemption certificate you will qualify for:
- free NHS dental treatment
- a voucher towards the cost of glasses or contact lenses
- a refund of reasonable expenses when travelling to receive NHS treatment.
If you do not receive a means-tested benefit you can still receive some help if you have a low income. You need to complete an HC1 form, available to download here: HC1 Scotland (nhsbsa.nhs.uk). It is also available from community pharmacies, GP practices, Jobcentre Plus or download a copy from the NHS Inform website www.nhsinform.scot.
People living in the council areas of Highland, Argyll and Bute, Western Isles, Orkney and Shetland can get help with the costs of travel to hospital for NHS treatment under the Highlands and Islands Travel Costs Scheme. You must have to travel at least thirty miles by land, or more than five miles by sea, to get to hospital.
You can find out more from your local health board or hospital.
Dealing with a death in Scotland
The Scottish Government have created a guide that provides practical advice about the legal steps you have to take after someone dies, including:
- Registering a death
- Planning a funeral
- If the death is reported to the procurator fiscal
- Financial help that you may be able to get
- Bereavement support organisations
You can access the guide at www.gov.scot/collections/what-to-do-after-a-death-in-scotland/