Attendance Allowance

3. Eligibility

You can get Attendance Allowance if you’re 65 or over and the following apply:

  • you have a physical disability (including sensory disability, for example blindness), a mental disability (including learning difficulties), or both
  • your disability is severe enough for you to need help caring for yourself or someone to supervise you, for your own or someone else’s safety
  • you have needed that help for at least 6 months (unless you’re terminally ill)

You must also:

  • be in Great Britain when you claim - there are some exceptions, such as members and family members of the armed forces
  • have been in Great Britain for at least 2 of the last 3 years (this doesn’t apply if you’re a refugee or have humanitarian protection status)
  • be habitually resident in the UK, Ireland, Isle of Man or the Channel Islands
  • not be subject to immigration control (unless you’re a sponsored immigrant)

There are some exceptions to these conditions if you’re living in another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland.

If you’re terminally ill

If you’re not expected to live for more than 6 months, there are ‘special rules’:

  • there’s no qualifying period for how long you’ve had your illness
  • if you’re eligible, you’ll automatically get the higher rate of Attendance Allowance

If you’re in a care home

You can’t usually get Attendance Allowance if you live in a care home and your care is paid for by your local authority. You can still claim Attendance Allowance if you pay for all your care home costs yourself.

Assessment

You might get a letter saying you need to attend an assessment to check your eligibility. The letter will explain why and where you must go.

At the assessment, you’ll be asked for identification. You can use a passport or any 3 of the following:

  • birth certificate
  • a full driving licence
  • life assurance policy
  • bank statements

You can’t get Attendance Allowance if you already get Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or Personal Independence Payment (PIP).