More and more people are looking around for additional sources of financial support in the UK’s cost of living crisis, prompting questions as to what else you can get if on a State Pension or nearing pension age.
In particular, the issue has arisen as to whether you can get State Pension and Personal Independence Payment (PIP) at the same time.
Around 12.4 million people receive a State Pension – most of those getting the old Basic State Pension from before April 2016 – and 1.4 million pensioners get the income top-up known as Pension Credit. But what about PIP?
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The Department for Work and Pensions has clarified the rules that apply to Personal Independence Payment if you’re getting the State Pension.
Justin Tomlinson, Minister of State for Disabled People, Work and Health at the DWP, addressed this in the House of Commons.
He explained: “Government mobility support is focused on people who are disabled earlier in life; developing mobility needs in older life is a normal consequence of aging.
“You can claim Personal Independence Payment (PIP) until you reach State Pension age. Thereafter, if you are receiving PIP you will continue to do so including the mobility component.
“If you have a change in circumstances where a health condition worsens after State Pension age, you cannot claim the mobility component if you did not receive this previously.
“A mobility component is also not provided to those who claim attendance allowance.”
What is PIP?
Personal Independence Payment – or PIP – is designed to help people with some of the extra costs if they have a long-term physical or mental health condition or disability. It is gradually replacing Disability Living Allowance.
In order to qualify, a person’s health problems must mean they have had difficulties with daily living, getting around, or both, for three months, and expect this to carry on for at least another nine months.
Applicants must also have lived in England, Scotland or Wales for at least two of the past three years – and be in one of those nations when they apply.
And there are other rules to bear in mind, especially if you are approaching retirement age.
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How PIP and State Pensions work together – including crucial deadline
PIP payments are usually for those who are aged 16 or over and have not yet reached State Pension age.
There are, however, some exceptions. The Government guide to benefits confirms that those on State Pension can carry on getting PIP if they were already receiving it before they reached pension age and their condition has not changed.
It adds that those on State Pension may also get PIP if they have been claiming Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and have had a letter inviting them to apply for PIP instead.
You may also still make a claim for PIP if you’ve received it before and you were eligible for it in the year before you reached State Pension age.
So you must apply before you reach State Pension age and can then keep getting it in your retirement years.
Think about beginning a claim for PIP before you reach State Pension age – this is currently 66 for men and women but will rise further to 67 between 2026 and 2028.
Once you have reached State Pension age, you cannot start a new claim for PIP.
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How much is PIP?
The current PIP rates are £60 or £89.60 a week for the daily living component and £23.70 or £62.55 for the mobility component.
Whether you get one or both of these and how much you’ll get depends on how severely your condition affects you.
There are 284,000 people over State Pension age who receive PIP, the DWP said.
Age UK issued this advice to older people: “You may be eligible for PIP if you’re under State Pension age (and over 16) and need help with daily living activities or getting around, or both. If you’re awarded PIP before you’re of State Pension age, you’ll continue to receive it after too.
“PIP isn’t based on your National Insurance contributions and isn’t means-tested, which means it doesn’t matter how much income or savings you have.
“If you’ve reached State Pension age and have care needs, you should claim Attendance Allowance instead.”