If you spend more than 35 hours a week caring for your child, and they are receiving the middle or highest care rate of Disability Living Allowance, you may also be able to claim this allowance. You'll also need to be earning less than £116 per week.
Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
DLA is for under-16s who need extra looking after or have difficulty walking. It helps towards the extra costs that a serious illness like cancer may bring.
There are two components – care and mobility. Your child may qualify for one or both. If your child is over 16, they’ll need to apply for PIP instead (see below).
Employment Support Allowance (ESA)
ESA helps people aged 16 or over whose health condition - including stress and anxiety - or disability affects their ability to work.
There are two parts of ESA, one of which depends on your income and savings. Your child may be entitled to one or both parts depending on their circumstances.
ESA is normally received after Statutory Sick Pay has been paid, which can be for up to 28 weeks.
Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
PIP was introduced to replace DLA for people aged 16 to 64. It is there to help young people who have a health condition or disability, whether in or out of work, live as independently as possible and deal with extra costs that often come with having a health condition.
If your child is aged 16 or over and is already receiving DLA, they are unlikely to be affected until the end of 2017. You’ll receive a letter with a date by which to apply for PIP instead.
Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)
If you’re struggling to work due to stress, anxiety or illness, you may be entitled to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) from your employer.
This is paid for up to 28 weeks as long as you meet certain criteria. If your employer has its own company sick pay scheme that is equal to, or more than SSP, you may receive your payments in a different way.
Universal Credit (UC)
Universal Credit is a monthly payment for people who are looking for work or on a low income. It will gradually replace some of the existing income-related benefits for people aged 16 to 64.
Extra funds are available for people with a disability or health condition, childcare costs or caring responsibilities. This means that parents supporting their child can apply, as well as young people aged 18 or over.
- Get more help with health costs for your child
- Access one-off payments and grants
- Get free advice - speak to one of our specialist welfare advisors
Updated July 2017, next review due 2018.