Change of circumstances. — Scope | Disability forum
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Change of circumstances.

bluefate Member Posts: 2 Listener
Hi there. Long story I'm afraid so bare with me. 

I've been diagnosed with psychosis, depression and ADHD and I'm waiting on an assessment for an Autism diagnosis. I receive

ESA: £125 a week
PIP: £82.25 a week
HB: £100 a week (roughly) 
DHP: £15 a week 

i also pay council tax at a reduced rate. I pay roughly £11.60 a month. 

I have a carer who has looked after me for the last 3 years (she's a friend of the family who's moved from another city) and she used to stay the odd night to look after me. She currently receives 

£62.50 a week carers allowance 
£15 a week income support

she was living next door with my mum, but she's now had to move into mine full time because it's affected my mums benefits. Because we are close in age (I'm 24 and she's 21) my mum has been informed that it's likely we'll be seen as a couple and we should claim together. 

I have a few concerns: 

How does she start the claim for both of us?
How long will I be without income? (I have no savings) 
How much are we likely to receive as a couple (I have a mountain of debt) 

And anything else I need to know, please mention. 

Sorry for for the long post but I appreciate any help. 


  • dogfather
    dogfather Member Posts: 61 Connected
    Hi I can't really help with this it may be worthwhile posting this question to ask a benefits advisor, or contacting your local cab to see if they can offer some assistance.
  • bluefate
    bluefate Member Posts: 2 Listener
    Hi dogfather. I've actually posted in the hope a benefits advisor can help. 
  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,628 Pioneering
    Hello bluefate

    People only claim benefits as a couple when they are a couple.  

    Age has nothing to do with being a couple, it is the relationship between 2 people that is important. 

    A couple means that you are married, in a civil partnership or 'living together' as a married couple.  A couple will be in a relationship that is more than just friendship or as a carer.  When the DWP consider such a question, they look at how the household bills are paid, for example does one person pay all the bills, they look to see if one person shops and cooks for both people, they consider if other people see you as  a couple, do you have children together, they will even go on face book to see if you describe each other as a partner.  

    If you and you carer are not in a relationship with one another, and she is just a friend/carer, then it sounds like you are not  a couple. 

    If your carer did move in, then this may still however be a relevant change of circumstances that benefits need to know about.  This has nothing to do with being a couple it maybe for example you are claiming a single person discount on your council tax that needs to be removed.

    You mention that you get a DHP? Do you know why your full rent is not paid? Is it because you have a 2 bedroom property or is the rent to high too claim the full amount?

    I was also wondering about the amount of money your carer receives as it seems a low amount of Income Support.  This maybe because there are deductions from benefit, but i would have expected her to receive around £30 a week.  


    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland


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