• Age in Spain Team

Attendance Allowance - Guide


Attendance Allowance is a tax-free benefit you may be entitled to if you are of pensionable age and you need help with personal care due to a physical condition or mental disability. To receive Attendance Allowance in Spain or any other EU/EEA country, you need to be legally resident in that country before January 2021 (under the UK /EU Withdrawal Agreement) The benefit is for people who require the following kinds of assistance:

  • Help with things such as washing yourself, dressing, eating, using the toilet or communicating your needs.

  • Supervision to avoid putting yourself in danger (needing someone to keep an eye on your condition, diet, actions, etc.)

  • Personal supervision whilst on dialysis.

You do not have to have a carer or other people living with you in order to qualify for this benefit. It depends on your needs, not how you manage your care and support, so you can apply even if you live on your own.


How much is it?

There are two weekly rates, which depend on your level of need: If you qualify, the benefit continues for as long as your condition continues. If you receive the lower rate and your needs increase, you can apply for the higher rate at any time.


Can I qualify if I live in Spain?

You can qualify for Attendance Allowance if you live in Spain and used to live in the UK, so long as you were legally living in Spain before January 2021 (and can show that you fall under the UK/EU Withdrawal Agreement) and that you meet the other conditions regarding your support needs. If you live in Spain and you are entitled to a sickness benefit from Spain, or you have worked in Spain for a period of time, this might affect your entitlement. If you receive a state pension or invalidity benefit from Spain, you may be entitled to a Spanish disability benefit instead of Attendance Allowance, especially if it is paid at a higher rate than Attendance Allowance. You can check Spanish disability benefits here.

If you were not legally living in Spain before January 2021, this benefit is only available in very limited circumstances for a temporary period of up to 13 weeks or 26 weeks if you are receiving medical treatment.

What are the requirements for Attendance Allowance?

Usually you must have spent at least two of the last three years in the UK unless:

  • You are a posted frontier worker

  • You are a family member of a worker in the UK, including posted or frontier workers

  • You are claiming a Personal Independence Payment, Disability Living Allowance or Attendance Allowance under the special rules for terminally ill people.

  • You have lived and worked in the UK for a significant period.

  • You live outside of the UK and you fall under the scope of the UK /EUWithdrawal Agreement. Plus you meet the attendance rules.

If the previous conditions are met, then you will receive the attendance allowance as long as the person continues to work in the UK; as long as the person remains insured from their contributions or for the length of the time of your award; as long as the person receives that benefit or for the length of time of your award.

Making your application

It is important that when you complete the application form, you clearly explain your attendance needs. Do not underplay or minimise your need for help, be honest and include every detail, even though you might usually take your difficulties for granted because you live with them on a daily basis. It can be very helpful to get someone else to help you ensure that you include every detail. If you are uncertain about how to complete the Attendance Allowance form, you can check this official website containing instructions about the process. If you are unsure about how to complete it, contact us at casework@ageinspain.org

You can also apply by email to TEAM.EXPORTABILITY@DWP.GOV.UK (all uppercase) or by post to:

Freepost DWP

Attendance Allowance Unit, Mail Handling Site A

Wolverhampton

WV98 2AD

Phone: 0800 587 0912 or 0800 012 1574 (deaf or hard hearing users/speech difficulties) or +44 135 535 9022 if you live abroad.

*If you are sending your application by post from Europe, you will need to pay the postage.

We recommend that whichever application method you use, you keep a copy of all the documents used in the application. When applying by email, you will need to explain that you live outside of the UK and that you are applying as you qualify under the UK/EU Withdrawal Agreement.

The decision

The decision is made by the UK Disability and Carers service and takes three weeks or longer. If you are refused, you can appeal.

Once awarded, the benefit is paid into your chosen bank account You can also choose another person (such as a carer or family member) to receive the payment on your behalf.

If you are rejected, do not give up! Take advice and get professional support - because many applications are rejected simply due to insufficient explanation of the need. A resubmission of more detailed information and evidence on appeal can be successful.

How do I apply on behalf of someone else?

You can apply on behalf of someone who is too ill to do it themself or is unable to make their own decisionsIf the beneficiary cannot sign the form themself, the representative will need to:

  • Have power of attorney, if you need to make decisions on behalf of the claimant.

  • Be a deputy, if you need to sort out the process and manage the spending.

  • Be an appointee, if you want to make decisions on behalf of the beneficiary, and they cannot make decisions for themselves (and there is no power of attorney for them).

Carer’s Allowance

If you are under the scope of the Withdrawal Agreement and you are taking care of someone for at least 35 hours a week, you may be entitled to Carer’s Allowance. This benefit can be up to £65.25 a week. You do not have to be related to or living with the person you are caring for. It is one payment amount, whether you are looking after one or more people at the same time. If there is more than one carer, only one of you can claim Carer’s Allowance.

The requirements

You must

  • Be 16+ years old

  • Spend at least 35 hours a week caring for a disabled person

  • The person you care for receives an Attendance Allowance, Constant Attendance Allowance , the Disability Living allowance (medium or higher rate), the PIP or the Armed Forces Independence Payment

  • You are not in full time education

  • You earn less than £128 pounds a week after deductions

Claiming Carer’s Allowance

You need to give

  • Your National Insurance Number

  • Bank or building society details

  • Employment details and latest payslips if you’re working

  • Course details if you are studying

  • Details of expenses, such as pension contributions or the cost of caring for the disabled person while you’re at work

From the person you take care of:

  • Date of birth and address

  • National insurance number if they are 16

  • Disability Living Allowance if they’re under 16

You can claim Carer’s Allowance online by clicking this link. You can also apply by post by printing the form and sending it to the address at the end of the form.

If you need further information or help to claim Attendance Allowance, and/or Carer’s Allowance contact info@ageinspain.org.


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