Explaining about epilepsy and how it affects you can be difficult.
If you are applying for benefits such as Employment Support Allowance (ESA) and Personal Independence Payment (PIP), you may have to attend a face-to-face interview or medical assessment.
Sometimes, explaining about epilepsy and how it affects you can be difficult. Some people may know very little about epilepsy and how it can affect daily living. Others may have misconceptions about what epilepsy is, and how people with epilepsy are affected.
Download our factsheet for some of the reasons why epilepsy is a 'special case' when it comes to benefits assessments and eligibility. You can take this factsheet with you to your assessment.
If you are applying for a benefit, you will need to complete a form about how your condition affects you. Whether or not you are eligible for the benefit, and the amount of money you could be awarded, will depend partly on the answers you give on these forms.
Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) is a UK benefit for people of working age, who cannot work or who have 'limited capability to work' due to illness or disability, and who are not entitled to Income Support, Jobseekers Allowance or getting Statutory Sick Pay, or Statutory Maternity Pay.
Universal Credit is now available to all new claimants (unless they get, or are entitled to get, Severe Disability Premium). It is a benefit for working-age people (usually 16 to 64 years) who are on a low income, or who are looking for work and will replace some existing benefits, listed below.
Benefit decisions and appeals
Whether someone with epilepsy can claim benefits will depend on their situation. Some benefits such as Personal Independence Payment (PIP) are for people with a long-term disability or health condition, who need help or support with daily living, or with mobility, or both.
More information on Personal Independence Payments (PIP)
An important part of assessing your ability to carry out each activity is assessing whether you are able to do the activity ‘reliably’. Here, ‘reliably’ means that all of the following points apply.
Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is a UK benefit for people over the age of 16, to help with any additional costs due to having a long-term disability or health condition. This information is designed to help you with the first stage of applying for PIP - making a claim.
It is important that you fill in your form promptly and try not to put it off, even if it looks difficult. There is a short time frame for filling in and returning your form (usually one month), and this should be explained in the information you get from the DWP, which will include the deadline for returning the form.
Whether or not you qualify for PIP depends on how your condition affects you in two ways: your 'daily living' and your 'mobility' (how you physically move).
Information about the daily living and mobility activities that form part of your PIP assessment criteria.
Discretionary housing payments may be available to some people on housing benefit, or the housing costs element of universal credit.