Hello, I have just joined the forum, hoping to learn from and share with others. My mother has Parkinson's. I am sure I will have other topics as time goes on. For now I have been looking into what financial and other assistance she might be eligible for. I would be interested to hear if anyone has had experience of successfully applying for attendance allowance, where they or the person they applied for doesn't have a carer. I thought from reading the guidelines it was one of the eligibility criteria, but apparently not. Shes not yet at the stage of needing a carer, but definitely could do with a few things /help to make life easier, and financial help to do this.
It doesn’t sound like your mother qualifies for Attendance Allowance, if she doesn’t require care at the moment. If you look at eligibility, you get a broad idea on the criteria:
If she needs help dressing, and needs supervision or help preparing food for safety reasons, then you might just have a chance. Otherwise don’t bother.
if she is on low income, grants are available to help with adapting bathrooms, or fitting stairlifts. This is through the local council, so it’s a bit of a lottery these days.
Hi Mike, thanks for replying. Is this based on your own experience? I did already check the website, hence my hesitancy. However, the manager of one of the local advisors (since the local advisor was no help whatsover) seems to think she would qualify, and that it was not that relevant if she has a carer or not. This is why I wanted to hear from other people's experiences. She could use the money to get the help she needs - she struggles putting things away, getting things down, preparing and cooking food, etc. Amongst other things, she has extremely poor mobility, made worse by other health conditions.
From what you say, all those problems putting things away and getting things down, and preparing and cooking food then she may well qualify for AA. You’re right, it’s completely irrelevant whether she has a carer or not, nor is it relevant what condition is causing the problem. It’s certainly worth a go at applying - if you don’t buy a ticket, you won’t win the lottery. It’s not an enormous amount of money, but it would help. You’ve nothing to lose.
Hi, Did your mum apply for AA, and if so was she successful.
Thanks for following up. The last few months have been quite a journey.
Yes, we managed to get Attendance Allowance for my mum at the higher rate.
My advice to anyone is make sure you speak to the specialist benefits advisor at Parkinsons Uk - (the local advisor was zero help). He was extremely helpful with the application, and there to answer questions/support along the way.
Many of the difficulties people experience they wont necessarily think to say, as they take it for granted, but when you describe the difficulty alot of people with Parkinsons experience, and ask them if it is their experience, the answer is yes. I am sure you know this!
I am happy to share my experience with the benefits system too.
Attendance Allowance can be a passport to other benefits or higher rates of benefits, as it qualifies the person for a severe disability premium, ie. it is recognised that their disability means their living expenses - Attendance Allowance aside - will be higher than for other people.
For anyone that hasn’t applied for blue badge and taxi card, I also really recommend applying for these. They are really useful to have. (We managed to get these before she got her Attendance Allowance).
Also, its helpful to keep in mind, either when applying for yourself, or helping someone else apply, that its about the difficulty experienced doing the day to day tasks - ie it may be possible to wash, get dressed, etc, but is it done with more slowly/with difficulty/not as effectively/not as required?