U.K. Disability Pension: Disability Living Allowance


The Department for Work and Pensions is responsible for a range of benefits and services for people who are sick or disabled and their carers.

Definition: Defining the Meaning of Disability Living Allowance (DLA)

A non-means-tested, non-contributory benefit in the United Kingdom introduced in 1992 and scheduled for phase-out between 2013 and 2016, in relation to adults only, for whom it is to be replaced by a new Personal Independence Payment. DLA can be claimed by a UK resident aged under 65 years who has personal care and/or mobility needs as a result of a mental or physical disability. It is tax free.

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The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is the largest government department in the Government of the United Kingdom. DWP is responsible for a range of benefits and services for people who are sick or disabled, and their carers.

The Office for Disability Issues will be the focal point within government for coordinating the development and the delivery of services for disabled people.

Disability Living Allowance - Referred to as DLA - is a tax-free benefit for children and adults who need help with personal care or have walking difficulties because they are physically or mentally disabled.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) run a telephone helpline giving information on benefits for sick and disabled people, their representatives and carers. This is called the Benefits Inquiry Line (BEL).

In England, Wales and Scotland, you can contact the Benefits Inquiry Line on: 0800 88 22 00 or Textphone: 0800 24 33 55.

The Disability and Carers Service is part of the Pension, Disability and Carers Service (PDCS), an executive agency of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

DWP delivers support and advice through a modern network of local offices throughout England, Scotland and Wales, as well as providing phone and internet-based services. Its services are aimed at people of working age, pensioners, families and children, disabled people and employers.

With offices across the country, the service provides financial support for:

  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Carer's Allowance
  • Vaccine Damage Payments.

You may get Disability Living Allowance if:

  • you have a physical or mental disability, or both
  • your disability is severe enough for you to need help caring for yourself or you have walking difficulties, or both
  • you are under 65 when you claim
  • If you are aged 65 or over, you may be able to get Attendance Allowance.

You will not usually need a medical examination when you claim for Disability Living Allowance.

If you have a progressive disease and you are not expected to live for more than another six months there are special rules for claiming to make sure you get your benefit more quickly and easily.

Disability Living Allowance is normally paid directly into any account of your choice which accepts Direct Payment of benefits. This might be a bank, building society or other account provider. You may be able to get someone else to collect your Disability Living Allowance if you wish.

Quick Facts: Higher Rate Eligibility

  • Individuals are entitled to the higher rate mobility component if they:
  • Are physically disabled and as a result are unable, or virtually unable, to walk.
  • Are physically disabled and the exertion required to walk would endanger their life or health.
  • Are severely mentally impaired and have severe behavioral problems and receive the highest rate care component.
  • Have had both legs amputated at or above the ankle, or were born without legs or feet; or are blind and deaf and need someone with them outdoors.

Latest UK Disability Pension Publications

When we look at facts surrounding British welfare provision towards disability today, we can highlight a number of falsehoods and half-truths that have been consistently used to sell welfare benefit change to the British public.

Statistics show the average amount paid from Defined Benefit schemes will reach the highest ever level this year and the amount will fall thereafter.

This is a policy that would have an appalling impact on thousands of disabled people and the Government must think again.

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is being replaced with a new Personal Independence Payment.

Department for Work and Pensions will no longer pay Crisis Loans for items such as cookers and beds.

The Disability Living Allowance (DLA) in England is a tax-free benefit for people with disabilities.

More help for pensioners as UK Basic State Pension rates set to rise in 2011.

Reform of this benefit needs to follow a social rather than medical model based on needs and barriers faced rather than individual disability.

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