Disability Living Allowance for my child.

Here we have a general overview of the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) Scheme. This quick guide and information is to help and support you before you make a claim for your child.

Everyone who’s ever tried to fill in a DLA Claim Form will know what a huge and daunting task it can be. Cerebra’s step-by-step guide to filling it in aims to help make it that little bit easier for you.

The guide takes you through each question on the DLA form, giving you explanations of what they mean and tips on how to answer them. It also gives you advice about how to appeal if you’re unhappy with the decision. You can download the guide below.

Cerebra DLA Guide

What is DLA?

DLA for children may help with the extra costs of looking after a child who:

  • is under 16
  • has difficulties walking or needs more looking after than a child of the same age who doesn’t have a disability.
    They will need to meet all the eligibility requirements.

The DLA rate is between £22 and £141.10 a week and depends on the level of help the child needs. The child may need an assessment to work out what help they need.

What could my child be entitled to?

DLA for children is a tax-free benefit made up of 2 components (parts). The child might qualify for one or both components.

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 (that is, not expected to live more than 6 months), they don’t need to have had these difficulties for 3 months.

Care component:

The rate the child gets depends on the level of looking after they need, for example:

  • 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
Care component Weekly rate
                        Lowest                    £22
                        Middle                   £55.65
                        Highest                   £83.10

Mobility component:

The rate the child gets depends on the level of help they need getting about, for example:

  • 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
Mobility component Weekly rate
                          Lower                 £22
                          Higher                 £58

What should i expect?

You might get a letter saying the child needs an assessment to check their eligibility. The letter explains:

  • why and where they must go
  • what paperwork you must bring as proof of identity for yourself and the child, for example a passport or birth certificate

Contact the Disability Service Centre as soon as the child’s circumstances change. This can affect how much they get, for example if their disability gets worse or they go abroad for medical treatment.

Their DLA won’t usually be affected if they go:

  • into a local authority care home for less than 28 days
  • into a hospital
  • abroad for less than 13 weeks
  • abroad for less than 26 weeks to get medical treatment for a condition which began before they left

Disability Service Centre contact:
Telephone: 0345 712 3456
Textphone: 0345 722 4433
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm

How will i be paid?

DLA is usually paid every 4 weeks.

All benefits, pensions and allowances are paid into your bank, building society or credit union account.

What other help can i get?

You might qualify for Carer’s Allowance if you spend at least 35 hours a week caring for a child who gets the middle or highest care rate of DLA


What is Carers Allowance?

You can choose to be paid:

  • weekly in advance
  • every 4 weeks
  • every 13 weeks

It will be paid into an account, for example your bank account.

What else can I get?

For each week you get Carer’s Allowance you’ll automatically get National Insurance credits.

You may also be able to apply for: