The child will need to meet all the eligibility requirements. To qualify for DLA, the child must:
- be under 16
- need extra looking after or have walking difficulties
be in Great Britain, another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland when you claim - there are some exceptions, eg family members of the Armed Forces
- have lived in Great Britain for 2 of the last 3 years, if over 3 years old
- be habitually resident in the UK, Ireland, Isle of Man or the Channel Islands
- not be subject to immigration control
There are some exceptions to these conditions if the child is living or coming from another EEA country or Switzerland.
The rules on residence don’t normally apply if a child is terminally ill.
The child’s disability or health condition
The child’s disability or health condition must mean one or both of the following apply:
- they need more looking after than a child of the same age who doesn’t have a disability
- they have difficulty getting about
They must have had these difficulties for at least 3 months and expect them to last for at least 6 months. If they’re terminally ill (ie not expected to live more than 6 months), they don’t need to have had these difficulties for 3 months.
The rate the child gets depends on the level of looking after they need, such as:
- lowest rate - help for some of the day or night
- middle rate - frequent help or constant supervision during the day, supervision at night or someone to help while they’re on dialysis
- highest rate - help or supervision throughout both day and night, or they’re terminally ill
The rate the child gets depends on the level of help they need getting about eg:
- lowest rate - they can walk but need help and or supervision when outdoors
- highest rate - they can’t walk, can only walk a short distance without severe discomfort, could become very ill if they try to walk or they’re blind, severely sight impaired.
The DLA rate is between £21.80 and £139.75 a week and depends on the level of help the child needs.
How to claim
Use the DLA claim form to apply for Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children under 16. The form tells you where to send your application.
You can order a printed form by telephoning the Disability Living Allowance helpline on telephone number 0800 121 4600 or textphone 0800 121 4523 from Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
It is a long and complex form which you may find upsetting to fill in as it is important to reflect the impact the disabilities and needs have on the family.
It is highly recommended to get help if you can. Make sure you keep a copy before you send it back.
Some parent groups can help including;
Our barn are very experienced and helpful, Citizens Advice Bureau can also help.
Other helplines and national support groups maybe able to help