Health and carers


New-style Employment and Support Allowance

This is paid if you are sick/disabled and unable, or have limited capacity, to work. You’ll need to have paid enough national insurance contributions over the past two years to qualify for new-style Employment and Support Allowance (ESA). ESA is a fortnightly payment, it can be claimed alongside universal credit, but not alongside statutory sick pay or jobseeker’s allowance.

Personal Independence Payment

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) can help with extra living costs if you have both:

  • a long-term physical or mental health condition or disability.
  • difficulty doing certain everyday tasks or getting around because of your condition.

You can get PIP even if you’re working, have savings or are getting most other benefits. If you’re over 16, and under state pension age, you could get PIP to help with extra costs caused by a long-term illness or disability. To be eligible you should have a health condition or disability that affects your daily life or makes it hard for you to move around. It must have been going on for three months and be expected to continue for at least nine months (unless you’re terminally ill and have less than six months to live).

There are two parts to PIP:

  • a daily living part – if you need help with everyday tasks.
  • a mobility part – if you need help with getting around.

Whether you get one or both parts and how much you get depends on how difficult you find everyday tasks and getting around. The amount you get depends on how your condition affects you, not the condition itself. A healthcare professional will assess you to work out what level of help you need.

Find out more about PIP and how to claim.

Disability Living Allowance for Adults

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is being replaced by Personal Independence Payment (PIP) for disabled people. If you already get DLA, your claim might end. You’ll get a letter telling you when this will happen and how you can apply for PIP.

Disability Living Allowance for Children

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children may help with the extra costs of looking after a child who:

  • is under 16.
  • has difficulties walking or needs much more looking after than a child of the same age who does not have a disability.

Find out more on eligibility and how to claim Disability Living Allowance.

Attendance Allowance

Attendance Allowance – helps with extra costs if you have a disability severe enough that you need someone to help look after you.

To receive you should need help with personal support if you’re both:

  • physically or mentally disabled.
  • State pension age or older.

Find out more about Attendance Allowance and how to claim.

Additional Support

If you receive a benefit due to your health, you may be able to receive:

  • Water Sure Scheme – water saving devices and bill help.
  • Help with Health Costs.
  • Blue Badge.
  • Bus Pass.
  • Help with Heating Costs.
  • Social Tariffs for Phone and Broadband.

Find out more and how to claim additional PIP support.


If you are a carer for someone who has an illness or disability, there may be benefits, grants or other financial support available to you.

Carer’s Allowance

If you care for someone for at least 35 hours a week and the person you care for is getting a benefit because of their disability. You can qualify for Carer’s Allowance whether you are in or out of work. However, you must not earn more than a set amount.

You do not have to be related to, or live with, the person you care for, and you do not get paid extra if you care for more than one person. If someone else also cares for the same person as you, only one of you can claim Carer’s Allowance.

Carer’s Allowance can affect the other benefits that you and the person you care for get. You have to pay tax on it if your income is over the Personal Allowance. Carer’s Allowance does not depend on national insurance contributions and is not means-tested, so it is not based on your personal income or savings, but earnings may affect your entitlement. Find out more about Carer’s Allowance and how to claim.

Additional Support

For each week you get Carer’s Allowance you’ll automatically get National Insurance credits. You may also be able to apply for:

  • Support from your local council.
  • Council Tax Reduction.
  • Universal Credit if you’re on a low income or out of work.
  • Pension Credit if you’re over working age.
  • Grants and bursaries to help pay for courses and training.

If you live in Scotland and get Carer’s Allowance, you may also get Carer’s Allowance Supplement.

Universal Credit

People who spend more than 35 hours per week caring for someone who is getting a benefit because of their disability get extra money included in their Universal Credit – find out more in our Low income section.

Carer's Credit

If you are under State Pension age and you are caring for someone for at least 20 hours a week. Carer's Credit is a National Insurance credit that helps with gaps in your National Insurance record, which contributes towards your State Retirement Pension.

Pension Credit

If you are caring for someone and you and your partner have reached the qualifying age for Pension Credit. Pension Credit can increase your income, check out our Older people section for more information.


Young Carer Grant

Young Carer Grant is available in Scotland for young carers aged 16,17 and 18.

Carer’s Allowance Supplement

Carer’s Allowance Supplement is paid every six months. There is no need to apply for Carer’s Allowance Supplement. You will get this automatically if you get Carer’s Allowance and live in Scotland.

You can check what you might be entitled to by using a benefits calculator or contact our Services Team who are trained to help people access the state benefits they are entitled to. Simply fill in the Services Contact Form or you can call us on 0800 0093 8543 and and one of the team will be in touch.  

All advice is free and fully confidential.

The helpline is open 9am – 4.30pm Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Open 10am – 4.30pm on Wednesday. Excludes bank holidays.