If you have sustained injuries such as an amputation or catastrophic injuries as a result of an accident, this will affect your ability to work and live independently, affecting you both emotionally and financially. You may also require assistance from carers or support whilst you are unable to work in the form of benefits. It is often difficult to know what you may be entitled to claim or where to start. Many charities are available to provide guidance.
There are amputation support groups in the UK such as Limbless Association who not only provide advice and support, but key information as well. For example benefits can be claimed to provide financial help during your recovery and treatment. Further guidance is also provided by the NHS to help you cope emotionally, adjust practically and help with your finances. Please click here to view the NHS Adjusting to disability webpage.
If your injuries have resulted in a long term disability and you are aged between 16 and 64, you may be entitled to claim Personal Independence Payment ("PIP") which is intending to replace the Disability Living Allowance ("DLA").
In order to qualify for PIP you must satisfy the daily living and/ or mobility test, have no immigration conditions and pass the residence and presence tests.
Once you are 65 years old, you will not be able to make a new claim for PIP. If you are not already in receipt of DLA however, and are receiving help with personal care, you may also be able to claim attendance allowance subject to edibility. Please click here to find out more from gov.co.uk.
You may also be able to claim for Disability Premiums (Income Support) if you are under pension age and receiving PIP or DLA, subject to eligibility. Please click here to find out more from gov.co.uk.
In addition to the above you may also be able to obtain a grant from your council if you are disabled and need to make changes to your home in order to improve access and your daily living. Please click here to find out more from gov.co.uk.
In addition to the above, you may be entitled to claim for Employment and Support Allowance ("ESA") which will provide you with financial support if you are unable to work, together with personalised help to get to back into work if you are able to. You may apply for ESA if you are employed, self-employed or unemployed. You must have a Work Capacity Assessment and shall then be placed within one of two groups to allow the personalised care you require as an individual to be set. For more information click here.
Accidents at work
If your injuries have been caused by an accident or disease by work or while you were on an approved employment training scheme or course, you may be able to apply for Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit ("IIDB"). The level of benefit you receive will be subject to an assessment by a medical advisor and the assessment of your disability will be rated on a scale of 1 to 100%. You will normally need to be classed as 14% disabled or more in order to qualify for the benefit.
If you are requiring substantial care, your carer may also be able to claim for a care allowance. Please click here for more information from gov.co.uk.