Campaigns and activities
There are multiple interacting allowances that are relevant. These include:
There are also extra costs benefits including:
Some of the above are specifically disability-related; some are not, but are disproportionately received by disabled people (because of greater vulnerability to low income); and some, while general, have disability-related components.
Some are means-tested (eg Universal Credit); some are not (eg PIP); and some have both contributory and means-tested variants (ESA and JSA).
- If the allowance is means-tested, state under what conditions.
This varies greatly between benefits.
If YES, does the ceiling take into account the family situation of the person?
Means-tested benefits aggregate the resources and deemed requirements of couples. Children are mostly covered via CTC (which is means-tested) plus Child Benefit and (for disabled children) DLA (which are not).
Benefit rates and thresholds vary greatly and structures are complex – see https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/480317/proposed_benefit_and_pension_rates_2016_to_2017.pdf
These usually change annually in April via an inflation uprating, but some benefits are currently frozen and some have been designated for future reduction. The current position at any time can be found by using a search engine to locate “UK benefit rates”. (Please note that Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit are not included – for these, it is necessary to search for “UK tax and tax credit rates and thresholds”).
State briefly under what circumstances the allowance may be reduced.
There are three main circumstances:
- In order to compare the situation in different EBU member states, please indicate the minimum wage (if this exists in your country) for a full-time worker, and what is considered to be “the poverty line”.
The statutory National Minimum Wage (NMW) is currently £6.70 per hour for a worker aged 21 or over. (There are lower rates for younger workers). The NMW is periodically uprated. The current position at any time can be found at
The poverty threshold was for some years measured as 60% of median incomes after housing costs, equivalised for household structure. The Government has recently moved to the “before housing costs” formulation and is currently legislating to remove a percentage-based statutory measure altogether.
Unofficial “minimum income standards” are regularly produced by the Centre for Research in Social Policy at Loughborough University, which provides an online calculator for different household circumstances at http://www.minimumincome.org.uk/
- What are the organisations which calculate and attribute the allowance?
Most benefits are administered by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) (a central Government department) – some centrally and some through a network of local offices. Tax Credits and Child Benefit are administered by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (although when Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit are absorbed into Universal Credit over the next few years, they will thereby revert to the DWP). Local authorities have a role, administering Housing Benefit (mainly according to centrally-determined rules) and some localised cash-limited funds, for example in relation to local taxation relief.
Some benefits are subject to income tax and some are not – see https://www.gov.uk/income-tax/taxfree-and-taxable-state-benefits
ESA is both taxable (contributory version) and non-taxable (means-tested version).
Means-tested benefits confer entitlement to fringe benefits including health charge exemptions and free school meals. Locally, there may be benefits such as free access to, or concessionary charges for, sports and leisure facilities.
PIP is covered separately under section II. 7. b) below.
A person becoming disabled during their working life, if unemployed, will potentially be entitled to the range of benefits described in section A) above.
If they continue to work, they will potentially be entitled to in-work benefits. Most in-work benefits (Housing Benefit, Universal Credit, Child Benefit, Child Tax Credit, DLA, PIP) are available both in and out of work, the amount payable usually being determined by a means-test (except that Child Benefit is only means-tested for high earners and DLA and PIP are non-means-tested). Conversely, out-of-work benefits generally permit a (usually very) limited amount of earnings. The main exclusively in-work benefit is Working Tax Credit, although this is in the process of absorption into Universal Credit.
Specify by giving details of the following aspects:
If yes, give the name of this allowance and reply to the following questions.
Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and Personal Independence Payment (PIP) are designed to compensate for the additional costs of disability (including visual impairment). DLA is being phased out and replaced by PIP, so these answers relate to PIP.
- Minimum: 16
- Maximum: 65 (but with exceptions).
- Duration of the allowance: - periodically reviewed (but renewable).
- What is the amount of the allowance?
Daily living component: £55.10 (standard rate) or £82.30 (enhanced rate).
Mobility component: £21.80 (standard rate) or £57.45 (enhanced rate).
These are the 2015-16 rates and are frozen at that level for 2016-17. Thereafter, check current position (see 3. a) above). Please note that the UK Government is currently considering creating a lower rate below the standard rate of daily living.
- Which organisations attribute and pay the allowance:
State, local authorities, please give details.
Payment of the allowance
Usually every 4 weeks in arrears.
Compiled by Geoff Fimister, Campaigns Officer (Incomes)