Benefits for Older People

There are many benefits that Older People are entitled to and this page explains a bit more about the different benefits available, how to check your eligibility and how to claim

What is Attendance Allowance? Attendance Allowance is a benefit for people over State Pension age who need help with personal care or supervision because of illness or disability. It is a non-means tested benefit which means you are able to use it for whatever you wish to meet your needs and stay independent in your own home. It does not have to be spent on care. Quite often if you are awarded Attendance Allowance you may then become eligible to claim other benefits such as Pension Credit or Council Tax Reduction. Am I eligible to claim Attendance Allowance? You could be eligible to claim if you are over State Pension age, you have any type of disability or illness and it means that you need help with personal care or supervision. You must have needed help for at least 6 months unless your diagnosis is terminal which means you can make a claim straight away. How much could I get? There are 2 weekly rates and the rate you get depends on your needs. These rates are for 2019/2020.
  • £58.70 - this is the lower rate and is awarded to people who need help during the day or night
  • £87.65 - this is the higher rate and is awarded to people who need help during the day and night
How do I claim? You can apply by getting a claim form from the Attendance Allowance helpline on 0800 731 0122 or through Age UK Solihull. Age UK Solihull has Benefits Caseworkers who can complete your claim for you. Call them on 0121 704 7840 to find out how they can help you to claim. Age UK Solihull can also check your eligibility to claim.
What is Pension Credit? Pension Credit is a means tested benefit for older people and it is made up of two parts - Guaranteed Credit and Savings Credit. Guaranteed Credit tops up your weekly income to a minimum level. Savings Credit is a bit of extra money if you have some savings or a higher weekly income. Claiming Pension Credit can also result in you being eligible for other benefits such as: free NHS dental treatment, housing benefit, carers component, cold weather payments and more. Am I eligible to claim Pension Credit? You may be eligible for one or both parts of Pension Credit. You may be eligible for Guaranteed Pension Credit if you have reached State Pension Age and your weekly income is less than £167.25 if you are single or less than £255.25 if you are in a couple. You may be eligible for Savings Credit if you or your partner reached State Pension age before 6th April 2016. There is no savings limit for Pension Credit but if you have more than £10,000 then it could affect how much you will get. How much could I get? This can be dependent on your circumstances and your weekly income. Age UK Solihull can help you to determine how much Pension Credit you may be entitled to. How do I claim? You must call the Pension Credit claim line on 0800 99 1234. Age UK Solihull has Benefits Caseworkers who can complete your claim for you. Call them on 0121 70 7840 to find out how they can help you to claim. Age UK Solihull can also check your eligibility to claim.
What is Council Tax Support? Council Tax Support is also known as Council Tax Reduction. Council Tax Reduction is a local discount on your Council Tax bill. Council tax reduction may reduce your Council Tax bill by up to 100% depending on your circumstance. How much will I get? How much you get is dependent on your circumstance and will depend on a number of different factors including but not limited to:
  • what benefits you are in receipt of
  • your age
  • your income
  • who you live with
Am I eligible to claim Council Tax Support? If you are on a low income or are in receipt of certain benefits you may be able to claim. You can claim regardless of what your housing status is and whether you are in or out of work. Visit the Solihull Council website to check your eligibility. How do I claim? Your local Connect office can support you to claim council tax support or you can visit your local Community Advice Hub. Alternatively click here to claim for yourself online.
What is the Winter Fuel Payment? The Winter Fuel Payment is an annual tax free payment to help with heating costs. How much could I get? If you were born on or before 5th April 1954 you could get between £100 and £300 to help pay your heating bills. Your payment may be different if you or your partner are in receipt of certain benefits. How can I claim the Winter Fuel Payment? If you are eligible and you receive your State Pension or another social security benefit you will usually get the Winter Fuel Payment automatically. If you are eligible but don't get it you may need to make a claim. You can do this by phone on 0800 731 0160 or by post. A copy of the claim form is in the Useful Downloads section below. The Community Advice Hubs Winter Warmth Team can support you to claim the Winter Fuel Payment. Contact them via 0121 704 8080 or email winterwarmth@ageuksolihull.org.uk
Everyone aged over 60 can get free prescriptions and eye tests. You may also be eligible for help towards dental treatment, travel costs to hospital and towards the cost of glasses if you are in receipt of certain benefits. The NHS have a useful information page that discusses how you can get Help with Health Costs
Travel Passes You are entitled to a free travel pass when you have reached State Pension age and live in Solihull or the West Midlands. To apply online for a free travel pass click here. TV Licences If you are aged 75 or over you are eligible for a free TV licence. You still need to apply as they are not given automatically. However from the 1st June 2020, free TV licences will only be available to those who are in receipt of Pension Credit and over 75. You may also be entitled to a discount on your TV licence if you are disabled or retired and over 60. You can also get a 50% discount if you are registered blind or live with someone who is. Contact TV Licensing via telephone on 0300 790 6071  

Benefit Checks

To find out whether you may be eligible for one or more benefits you can complete a Benefits Check. These are online resources which tell you which benefits you may be entitled to based on the information you put into them. The Community Advice Hubs use two online Benefit Checks – one from Age UK and one from Turn 2 US.

The Age UK Benefits Calculator specialises in Older People's Benefits
Launch the Age UK Benefits Calculator
The Turn 2 Us site holds information about other financial support that may be available to you, such as grants and also has its own Benefits Calculator
Launch the Turn2Us Benefits Calculator

Useful Downloads & Websites

Listed here are downloadable versions of factsheets, guides and links to useful websites relating to Older People's Benefits