Pensioner left with bladder issues after prostate cancer able to get £200 a week boost thanks to simple check

Pensioner looks at finances at desk with calculator and laptop

A pensioner who claimed Attendance Allowance was able to boost their income by £200 a week by getting additional support through Pension Credit

Jessica Sheldon

By Jessica Sheldon

Published: 14/10/2023

- 06:00

Updated: 17/10/2023

- 11:27

Attendance Allowance is a state pension age benefit which is intended to help with extra costs if a person has a disability severe enough that they need someone to help look after them

A 72-year-old pensioner was able to secure an income boost worth £200 a week by checking what he was entitled to.

David was successfully treated for prostate cancer, but it left him with problems controlling his bladder.

David often found himself caught short, with the condition meaning he had to wear incontinence pads and change and wash his clothes more often, leaving him with extra outgoings.

The pensioner spoke to the charity Independent Age to see if he was able to get any help with paying for the extra costs relating to his health condition.

Pensioner holds walking stick

David was able to claim Attendance Allowance and in doing so, he became eligible for Pension Credit


The adviser he spoke to, Kevin, explained David was able to claim Attendance Allowance. He applied for the benefit and was awarded the lower rate - which is currently £68.10 a week.

In doing so, David also became eligible for Pension Credit, as claiming Attendance Allowance increased the amount of money that the government expected him to live on, the charity explained.

Although his Pension Credit was a small amount, being able to get it unlocked access to discounts and financial support.

For instance, it meant David qualified for full Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support.

Overall, David’s income increased by more than £200 a week.

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Fran McSweeney, head of national services at Independent Age, has highlighted the importance of pensioners checking to see if they are entitled to additional support.

She told GB News: “With the cost of living continuing to put pressure on older people’s budgets, it is so important for everyone in later life to check if they are entitled to financial support, whether it be for low income, caring responsibilities or health conditions.

“We know some people over 65 don’t always claim everything they could because they don’t know the support exists, or they feel embarrassed or like someone else is more deserving.

"We hear from people every day who are only eating one meal or sitting in the dark because of costs. For many of these people, this money is sitting there waiting to be claimed and it can be a life-changing amount.

Ms McSweeney shared the story of Thabani, a 74-year-old former nurse who was worried she would lose her home because she couldn’t afford her mortgage.

Ms McSweeney said: "Our helpline advisors helped her claim the £800 a month in financial entitlements she was entitled to, which included Pension Credit, Attendance Allowance and Council tax Reduction. That’s an extra £9,600 a year.

“People over 65 with a weekly income below £200 (or under £300 if you’re in a couple), could be missing out on Pension Credit, up to £3,300 a year of extra income.

"If you have a long-term health condition or disability that means you need help with personal care or supervision to keep you safe, you may qualify for Attendance Allowance. Housing Benefit can cover some or all of your rent if you’re on a low income.

"Finally, if you spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone who receives certain disability benefits you may qualify for Carer’s Allowance. You can check what you’re eligible for via Independent Age’s helpline on 0800 319 6789 or the online benefit checker at”

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