Department of Work and Pension benefits

When you’re struggling with your finances, even the simplest tasks such as food shopping, paying a bill or opening mail, can cause an extraordinary amount of worry and stress which could seriously impact on your mental health.

However, did you know that you may be entitled to extra benefits, such as Universal Credit, even if you’re still in work?

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  • Universal Credit

    Universal Credit is a benefit for working-aged people and the amount you can get will depend on your individual circumstances and how much income you have. You can also claim for Universal Credit if you work but have low earnings and if you live in rented accommodation an amount for housing costs will also be included. For more information on Universal Credit, click on the links below:

  • Personal Independent Payment (PIP)

    If you need extra help because of an illness, disability or mental health condition, you may be entitled to PIP to help with your daily living or to improve your mobility. PIP can cover things like:

    • Preparing and cooking food
    • Eating food or drinking
    • Managing therapy or monitoring a health condition
    • Taking medication
    • Washing and bathing
    • Managing toilet needs or incontinence
    • Dressing and undressing
    • Communicating verbally
    • Reading and understanding signs, symbols and words
    • Socialising with other people
    • Deciding about your money and budget
    • Planning and following journeys

    Unlike Employment and Support Allowance, to qualify for PIP you don’t need to have paid any National Insurance, and it doesn’t matter what your income is, if you’re working or if you have any savings. To be eligible for PIP you need to be classified as ‘needing help to do an activity’. This means you need a person or device to:

    • Do it for you
    • Do it with you
    • Remind you to do it
    • Watch you do it to keep safe

    You may also be classified as needing help if you do an activity yourself but:

    • You are not safe
    • You can’t complete the task well enough
    • You can’t complete the task often
    • It takes you a long time

    For more information about PIP, click on the links below:

  • Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)

    Once your Statutory Sick Pay is exhausted after 28 weeks, you can claim ESA from the following day. ESA can be paid in addition to your occupational sick pay and is currently paid at a rate of £75 per week.

    After the initial 13-week assessment phase, the Department of Work and Pensions will assess your ability to work, and if you’re deemed unable to work, your weekly entitlement will increase to £114 pr week. Depending on your circumstances, you may also be entitled to Universal Credit as a top up.

    ESA is claimable by anyone who has paid the appropriate amount of Class 1 national insurance contribution in the qualifying number of tax years (usually the last two years). It isn’t means tested and is only reduced by an Occupational Pension if this is over £85pw. ESA is taxable.

    To learn more about ESA, click on the links below:

  • Benefits following a bereavement

    When a loved one has passed away, many people don’t know where to start handling the situation, and finances can seem especially overwhelming. However, did you know that if you’ve recently experienced a bereavement, you may be eligible for additional benefits and support from the Department of Work and Pensions?

    Following the death of a loved one, widows, widowers or surviving civil partners are entitled to a Bereavement Support Payment. The payment consists of a one-off lump sum and up to 18 monthly instalments. In order to be eligible, your partner must have died before they reached state pension age.

    Bereavement Support Payments have two rates:

    • The standard payment rate is a lump-sum of £2,500 and up to 18 monthly instalments of £100.
    • You may be entitled to the higher rate payment if you were pregnant at the time of your late spouse or partner’s death or had a child living with you at the time of your late spouse or partner’s death. Those who are eligible for the higher rate will receive a lump sum of £3,500 and up to 18 monthly payments of £350.

    Any Bereavement Support Payment you receive (standard or higher rate) is not included as income when working out your entitlement to other benefits.

    Help with funeral costs

    If you need help to pay for a funeral you’re arranging, you may be eligible for a Funeral Expenses Payment if you receive any of the following:

    • Universal Credit
    • Income Support
    • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
    • income-related Employment and Support Allowance
    • Pension Credit
    • Housing Benefit
    • the disability or severe disability element of Working Tax Credit
    • Child Tax Credit

    A Funeral Expenses Payment can help pay some of the costs for:

    • burial or cremation fees
    • travel to arrange or go to the funeral
    • the cost of moving the body within the UK
    • death certificates or other documents
    • You may also get up to £1,000 for any other funeral expenses, such as funeral director’s fees, flowers or the coffin

    For more information about Funeral Expenses Payments, click on the links below:

TASC is here to support your financial wellbeing

TASC is here to support your financial wellbeing

As part of our commitment to supporting the financial wellbeing of the UK’s ambulance community, we employ an experienced Money Advisor who can:

  • Offer a benefits check to see if you’re entitled to any extra support
  • Give you guidance on reducing debts, maximising your income or applying to the Department of Work and Pensions for support
  • Provide information on how to apply for support after a bereavement
  • Work with you to apply for grants

To find out more, visit our financial services webpage. Alternatively download a TASC application form or email

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Please note that this page was last updated in October 2021, and the figures on this page may have been updated since then. For the latest information, please visit the UK Government website.