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Disability Living Allowance

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is a benefit for disabled people. It's a monthly, tax-free payment, but it's gradually being replaced by Personal Independence Payment.

What are the eligibility criteria for DLA?

Disability Living Allowance has been discontinued by the government and is gradually being replaced by Personal Independence Payment. However, some people can continue to claim DLA if:

  • You were born before 8 April 1948 and are already currently claiming DLA
  • You are claiming on behalf of a disabled person under the age of 16

To continue to claim DLA you will need to show that you meet the criteria for either or both of the two components – the ‘care component’ and the ‘mobility component’

You may be eligible for the care component if you require help with everyday tasks such as cooking or dressing. It doesn’t matter whether you have anyone who helps support or case for you – what’s important is that you have a need for help with these tasks.

You may be eligible for the mobility component if you have severe difficulties walking without assistance.

Both components have levels of severity which determine the rate of DLA you will be eligible for (see DLA rates below).

Which disability benefit should I be claiming?

If you haven’t already claimed DLA then you’ll need to find out which benefit you should claim, as there are different ones depending on your age:

  • If you haven’t already claimed DLA and you’re under State Pension age, then Personal Independence Payment is the benefit you need to look into.
  • If you haven’t already claimed DLA and you’re over State Pension age, then the benefit to claim is Attendance Allowance.

Not sure when you reach State Pension age? You can find out here

I already claim DLA - will I be reassessed?

If you’re already claiming DLA, you may be wondering about what will happen as the benefit is replaced.

It all depends on your age:

  • If you were born on or before 8 April 1948 you can continue to receive DLA as long as you still have care or mobility needs.
  • If you were born after 8 April 1948, then you will be reassessed for Personal Independence Payment instead.

If you need to move over to Personal Independence Payment, you’ll get a letter from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) about this.

What are the current DLA rates?

If you’re already on DLA and want to know how much you should be getting, here are the weekly payment rates from April 2021.

Care component Weekly rate How much support you need
Highest rate £89.60 Constantly need help day or night
Middle rate £60.00 Frequently need help day or night
Lowest rate £23.70 Need help only some of the day or with cooking meals
Mobility component Weekly rate How much support you need
Higher rate £62.55 You're only able to walk a short way before feeling out of breath, dizzy or unsteady, or if you're not able to walk at all outdoors
Lowest rate £23.70 You need help walking outdoors in places you don't know because of a physical or mental disability, such as deafness or dementia

How do I apply for disability benefits?

If you don’t currently claim DLA, then you may be able to claim Personal Independent Payment (PIP) or Attendance Allowance instead.

How to claim Personal Independence Payment

How to claim Attendance Allowance

If you already claim DLA and want to know whether you will continue to claim or will be transferred to PIP, you can call the Government’s Disability Living Allowance helpline.

For more information call the Age UK Advice Line on 0800 678 1602.
We’re open 8am to 7pm, every day of the year.

What extra money are you entitled to?

Do you know what benefits you are entitled to? Our Benefits Calculator can help you, quickly and easily, to find out what you could be claiming.

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Last updated: Apr 20 2021

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