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Personal independence payments can help with some of the extra costs associated with long-term illness or disability.

Personal independence payments (PIPs) were introduced in June 2013 to replace the disability living allowance (DLA). All new applicants must apply for a PIP.

People already claiming DLA will continue to get it until the Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) writes to tell you when it will end and to invite you to apply for PIP. This will happen 20 weeks before your DLA ends. All new applicants must apply for a PIP.

On this page, we tell you about:

1. Who can get personal independent payments (PIP)
2. How much is available
3. Personal independent payments key facts
4. How to apply for personal independence payments.

Who can get personal independence payments (PIP)?

Anyone aged 16-64 who needs help with personal care (such as washing, dressing,cooking meals, or getting around), has had the condition or disability for three months and expects it to continue for at least 9 months (unless you’re terminally ill with less than 6 months to live) can apply for PIP. If you're aged 65 or over, and making a new claim, you must apply for attendance allowance. However, if you're already claiming PIP when you reach 65 you can stay on that. If you have mobility problems and are under 65, it's worth applying for PIP as soon as possible, as this includes an additional payment for mobility problems whereas attendance allowance does not.

This benefit is not means tested, so it doesn’t matter if your relative has a job or other source of income.

To qualify, your relative must have lived in Great Britain for at least two out of the last three years and be in the country when they claim. There are some exceptions to this. See GOV.UK for more details on eligibility.

How much is PIP?

There are two parts to the PIP:

Daily living component: applicants will be assessed on things like ability to prepare food and drink, wash, dress, go to the toilet, manage health conditions and make financial decisions. The standard rate is £55.65 a week. The enhanced rate is £83.10 a week (2017-18).
Mobility component: applicants will be assessed on ability to ‘plan and follow a journey’ and ‘move around’. The standard rate is £22. a week. The enhanced rate is £58 a week (2017-18).

Your relative might be eligible for one or both components depending on their level of need and how much they are affected by their condition. Applicants will be assessed to work out what level of help they need.

PIP key facts

  • If your relative is currently claiming DLA and they are over 65, they should be invited to make a PIP claim by October 2017.
  • If your relative has a terminal illness and is not expected to live for more than six months, they will get the enhanced daily living component rate (see 'How much is PIP' section above). The rate of mobility component depends on their needs.

How do I apply for PIP?

To apply for PIP, contact the DWP on 0800 917 2222 (Monday to Friday 8am-6pm). It will ask for information such as:

  • contact details and date of birth
  • National Insurance number
  • bank or building society details
  • doctor’s or health worker’s name
  • details of any time spent abroad or in a care home or hospital.

You can call on your relative’s behalf, but they will need to be with you when you call. Make sure you have the above information handy.

After the initial call, the DWP will post you a form called ‘How your condition affects you’, which your relative will need to complete and return.

It will also arrange for an independent health professional to assess your relative to work out the level of help they need. This may be done via a phone call or a face-to-face consultation.

The DWP makes the decision about each claim based on the results of the assessment and the details on the application form.

More information

Page last reviewed: April 2017
Next review due: April 2018