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Benefits are provided by the government to help people on low income who are unable to pay for basic needs. 

They’re also provided for people with a long term condition or disability who have to spend extra on help.

Being eligible for benefits

Many people who could be claiming a benefit don’t realise that they’re entitled. They miss out because they:

  • don't know that a particular benefit exists
  • think they have too much money coming in
  • think they have too much in the bank to qualify

However, some benefits are paid no matter how much you have coming in.

Means tested benefits

Some benefits do take into account your savings and income and are known as means-tested benefits.

Some people miss out on these because they’ve applied in the past and been refused. It’s worthwhile re-checking, as your finances may have changed or the amounts needed may have been reduced by the government.

Applying for benefits

If you need help looking at what benefits could help you, you can visit your local Citizens Advice Bureau or Age UK office.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) website can also help you find out whether you qualify for certain benefits. It can give you an estimate of how much you may be entitled to and it covers the main benefits, including:

  • Attendance Allowance
  • Carer's Allowance
  • Child Benefit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Housing Benefit
  • Income Support
  • Jobseeker's Allowance

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