Press release

Disability Living Allowance to be replaced with new benefit

Disabled people will be able to rely on a non means tested cash benefit as Living Allowance is replaced by Personal Independence Payment.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Disabled people will continue to be able to rely on a non means tested cash benefit to as Living Allowance (DLA) is replaced with a new Personal Independence Payment. 

The new benefit will continue to help disabled people live independent lives and will for the first time include regular reassessments to ensure that people are getting the right level of support when they need it most.

This follows one of the biggest ever consultations at the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) with more than 5500 responses from disabled people and disability organisations.

Responding to the consultation today, Maria Miller, Minister for Disabled People said:

Disabled people are at the heart of our welfare reform plans and severely disabled people who need extra help and support will always get it.  That’s why we have spent the last few months working closely with disabled people and disability organisations about the changes to DLA.

We’ve listened to what they have told us and we will be working with them to make sure that the new Personal Independence Payment does what it should.

We have also said that we won’t remove the mobility component from care home residents in 2012 and instead we are reviewing the mobility component as part of our wider reforms of DLA.

  • DLA is paid to help people who cannot do things like walk or wash and dress themselves.
  • It provides a contribution to the extra costs severely disabled people incur.
  • DLA is claimed by 3.2 million people at an annual cost of £12bn.
  • Currently more than 2 million people get the benefit indefinitely which means there is no way of knowing if their condition has changed or if they actually need more help and support.
  • Nearly a quarter of all working age people on DLA have either not had a change to their award, or their award looked at in 10 years.

The Personal Independence Payment can be claimed by disabled people whether they are in and out of work. It will also:

  • Introduce a more objective assessment of need, which will be developed with the help of disability organisations and disabled people
  • Allow disabled people to be reassessed over time - something that is lacking in the current system - to ensure everyone receives the correct support if their needs change.

Notes to Editors:

  • The consultation response can be viewed at
  • Disability Living Allowance is designed for people who have problems walking or looking after themselves because of a disability.
  • The benefit is paid to 3.2 million people at an annual cost of £12bn.
  • 130,000 of those who were first awarded DLA in 1992 have never had their needs reviewed, or a change to their award, so we have had no way of knowing if their condition has changed and they still qualify for the benefit. 
  • These changes will come into force from 2013/14
Published 4 April 2011