Focus on how frequently you need help. To qualify for the lower rate of Attendance Allowance, you have to show you need help ‘frequently’ during the day or at night. For example, if you need help looking after your appearance, this could add up to six or seven times a day, if you include help to check your clothes are clean after a meal, help to find a coat and matching shoes, and so on.
How to answer questions about personal tasks? Questions 27-43 ask about your care needs with personal tasks. It is really important that you use the blank boxes to explain if you:
1. Have difficulty or need someone to help you with personal tasks - for example washing, getting out of bed or getting dressed - at least 3 times during the day.
2. Have difficulty or need someone to supervise you throughout the day to make sure you stay safe - for example to stop you falling or to look after you if you have seizures or blackouts.
3. Have difficulty or need someone to help you with personal tasks repeatedly (2 or more times) during the night or just once if it is for 20 minutes or more - for example if you need help getting out of bed, going to the toilet or changing the sheets if you have an accident.
4. Need someone to watch over you or supervise you during the night to make sure youare safe - they need to help you at least 3 times, or just once if it is for 20 minutes or more, for example in case you have a fit while you are asleep, or to stop you falling over if you have to get up.
Allowance form is awarded based on your needs, not just on your medical condition. Many applications are turned down because people do not mention or are not clear about how their illness or disability affects their lives. Do not underestimate your needs when filling in the form.
Think about all the things you cannot do, or have trouble with, because of your condition. Do not leave things out, even if you feel you can manage well enough: if you have found complicated ways of coping, make sure you explain these too.