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ACWG Stories: How We Helped Deborah

Published on 09 June 2021 12:30 PM

Introducing Deborah, 72, who contacted us when she became concerned about her and her husband's finances:

Deb lives with her husband, Paul, in their family home in Swansea. Both in their early seventies, each has their own health issues; Sian suffers with arthritis in multiple joints and Paul has been diagnosed with dementia.

Deb contacted us at Age Cymru West Glamorgan after becoming concerned about their household finances. She explained how her husband Paul had lived with their son for a period of time, during which her single status meant that she had been able to claim Pension Credit Guarantee (meaning that she was eligible for both Council Tax Reduction and Housing Benefit). But now Paul had returned to their marital home and, as a result, found her Council Tax Reduction and Housing Benefit had reduced significantly. Deb was fraught with worry about being able to afford both their rent and Council Tax on their household income.

An advisor from our Information and Advice team carried out a full Benefits Check for Deb and found that her own health issues meant that she was eligible to claim Attendance Allowance, and that Paul was only claiming the Mobility component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA). Because of Paul’s significant care needs, our advisor recommended that they apply for a DLA review by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).

We helped Deb through the application for Attendance Allowance, and we’re delighted to share that she has been awarded the Higher Rate. We also assisted Paul in completing a DLA review form; we’ve not yet heard back from the DWP, but we are hopeful that Paul will begin to receive the Care component of DLA alongside the Mobility component. We’ve also helped them to apply for Carers Allowance, which would mean that a Carers Premium can be added to their Pension Credit (increasing it to Pension Credit Guarantee). Ultimately, this will mean that Deb and her husband will no longer have to pay Council Tax and that their Housing Benefit will increase.

Deb and Paul’s Benefits are in the process of being increased significantly, and Deb is no longer extremely worried about coping financially. “It is reassuring to know that there is someone on the end of the phone, and I now know that there is someone to help.”

Age Cymru West Glamorgan provides free Information and Advice on a range of issues relating to people 50 plus, and their carers in Swansea, Bridgend, Neath and Port Talbot. We can advise you on your rights and entitlements, local services and support available to you and those who care for and support you. Call 01792 346344 to find out how we can help you.