Benefits advice

Receive the benefits you’re entitled to

If you’re visually impaired, there’s a range of benefits available to make life easier.

What benefits could you claim?

Attendance Allowance

This is for people over state pension age who need help with personal care because of a physical or mental disability. There are two different rates and how much you get depends on the level of care that you need because of your disability. If you claim Attendance Allowance you could be entitled to extra Pension Credit, Housing Benefit or a Council Tax Reduction.  The Attendance Allowance is also tax-free and not income related.

Find out more: Attendance Allowance: Overview – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]

Disability Living Allowance

This is a tax-free benefit for disabled people who need help with mobility or care costs. It can now only be claimed on behalf of children under the age of 16 years; however, it can remain in payment to adults who reached the age of 65 before 8 April 2013.

There are two components of Disability Living Allowance (DLA); the care component and the mobility component. Your child might qualify for one or both components and the amount of benefit awarded depends on the level of help your child needs.

Find out more: Disability Living Allowance: Overview – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]

Personal Independence Payment

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is for people aged between 16 and state pension age. It can help with some of the extra costs caused by long-term ill-health or a disability. The rate depends on how your condition affects you, not the condition itself. It’s tax-free and you can claim it whether you’re in or out of work.

To be eligible for PIP you must have a long-term health condition or disability and difficulties with activities related to daily living and/or mobility.

Find out more: Personal Independence Payment (PIP): Overview – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]

Pension Credit

You may be entitled to Pension Credit if you and your partner (if you live with a partner) are over state pension age and are on a low income. Pension Credit gives you extra money to help with your living costs and can also help with housing costs such as ground rent or service charges. In addition, if you or your partner receive the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit and your electricity supplier is part of the Warm Home Discount scheme, you could receive a one-off payment in the winter to reduce your electricity bill.

Find out more: Pension Credit: Overview – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]

Universal Credit

Universal Credit is a payment to help with your living costs if you’re on a low income, out of work or you cannot work. You must be aged between 18 and the State Pension age and have £16,000 or less in money, savings and investments in order to be eligible.

Find out more: Universal Credit: Overview – GOV.UK ( [page opens in a new tab]

Blind Person’s Allowance

Blind Person’s Allowance is a tax-free allowance which means you can earn more before you start paying Income Tax. You can only claim Blind Person’s Allowance if you’re registered with your local council as blind or severely sight impaired or you have a document from your doctor that says you’re blind or severely sight impaired.

Find out more: Blind Person’s Allowance: Overview – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]

Additional benefits

If any of these benefits are awarded it may increase the amount of Income Support, Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) or Pension Credit you’re entitled to and reduce the amount of Housing Benefit or Council Tax you have to pay. Additionally, your carer (if you have one) may be able to claim Carer’s Allowance in their own right.

Find out more: Carer’s Allowance: Overview – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]


If you are registered as sight impaired or severely sight impaired there are a number of concessions that you may be entitled to.

Free bus pass

If you live in Cornwall and are blind or partially sighted you will be eligible to apply for a free bus pass. You will need to provide proof of your registration with the council or alternatively you can provide a letter from your doctor or optician.

Find out more: Apply for an older or disabled person’s bus pass – Cornwall Council [page opens in new tab]

Blue Badge Parking Permit

You do not have to be a driver or a car owner to apply for a blue badge but you do have to be registered as severely sight impaired if you are applying due to your sight loss. It can take between 6 to 8 weeks to process your application and you have to pay a £10 fee.

Find out more: How do I apply or reapply for a blue badge? – Cornwall Council [page opens in new tab]

TV Licence blind concession

If you or someone you live with is registered as severely sight impaired you are eligible for a 50% concession on your TV licence. Please note, this does not apply if you are registered as sight impaired.

Find out more: Blind (severely sight impaired) – TV Licensing ™ [page opens in new tab]

Support with energy bills

Winter Fuel Payment

If you are of State Pension age you could receive a payment to help you with your heating bills. This is known as the Winter Fuel Payment. If you are eligible the payment will be made automatically between November and December.

Find out more: Winter Fuel Payment: Overview – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]

Warm Home Discount

If you are in receipt of the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit you’ll automatically receive a £140 discount of your electricity bill. You may also be eligible for the discount if you’re on a low income and meet your energy supplier’s criteria for the scheme. The money is not paid to you – it’s a one-off discount on your electricity bill between October and March. You can still qualify for the discount if you use a pre-pay or pay-as-you-go electricity meter. And you may be able to get the discount on your gas bill instead if your supplier provides you with both gas and electricity.

Find out more: Warm Home Discount Scheme: Overview – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]

Energy Bills Support Scheme 2022

In May 2022, the government announced an Energy Bills Support Scheme to help households deal with rising energy costs. All households with a domestic electricity connection will be automatically eligible for a grant of £400 which does not have to be repaid. The discount will be made automatically by your energy supplier. Over the course of six months from October, direct debit and credit customers will have the money credited to their account. Customers with pre-payment meters will have the money applied to their meter or paid via a voucher.

Find out more: Energy Bills Support Scheme explainer – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]

Cost of Living Payment

You may be able to get a payment to help with the cost of living if you’re getting certain benefits or tax credits.

You do not need to apply. If you’re eligible, you’ll be paid automatically in the same way you usually get your benefit or tax credits. The payments will be made separately from your benefit or tax credits.

Find out more: Cost of Living Payment – GOV.UK ( [page opens in new tab]

Listen to an audio recording of our Benefits service sheet here:

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