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Severe Disability Premium

I wonder if anyone knows the answer to this one please?

My husband currently receives Income Related ESA - he is in the support group, and I can see that he gets "Extra Money because of the Disability Income Guarantee" with his ESA. He gets the PIP daily living component, so I can see that if he was the only adult in the household, he would get the severe disability premium with his ESA.

Turn2Us say on their website, that "Sometimes you can get Severe Disability Premium even if there are other adults in the household. This can be complicated and you should talk to an advisor." Anyone know what that means? (I'm a bit reluctant to talk to the CAB because last time the advisor took me through a whole benefit calculation instead of answering my specific question).

Ultimately, what I am trying to find out is, whether he would have to claim UC if he moved into separate accommodation. (Social Services have recommended that he be housed separately from us, because he is not coping in the family home... but he is reluctant because he is scared to move onto UC) Apparently, if he is eligible for SDP, then he is exempt from having to claim UC, and would stay on IR ESA, but if he is not considered to be eligible because I am living with him atm, then he might have to claim UC. 

I do get carers allowance, but it is for our son, not for my husband... but it does say "Carer's Allowance" on the ESA statement.


  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 15,073Community champion Disability Gamechanger

    This is very complicated because he's your husband and whether or not he'll be able to claim as a single person is a different story, even if he does live alone. I'd advise you to get some expert face to face advice regarding this from an advice agency near you.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 15,073Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    To add to the above, it may even be very difficult to get any exact advice regarding this because it's highly likely that only a decision maker could make this decision. Even if you're not living together you could still be classed as living as a married couple, which will mean he won't be able to claim as a single person. The same will apply to you, regarding benefits.
  • kiwi_1706kiwi_1706 Posts: 11Member Listener
    That's interesting... so if we could demonstrate that we were still living as a married couple, but just in separate accommodation (which is exactly what the social worker has recommended), then we might not have to move over to UC anyway because it would just be a change of circumstances rather than a new claim?

    I spoke to a DWP advice line about the SDP yesterday... they recommended I speak to ESA, who in turn recommended I speak to the LA. Apparently the LA can decide to keep someone on ESA under certain circumstances.... but only they know what those circumstances are... apparently...
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 15,073Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    edited December 4
    No, that's not what i advised. As you are still a married couple but living in separate accommodation then your husband may not be able to claim the SDP because even though you're not living together you're still living as a married couple. Your ESA claim is a couples claim and you may not be able to claim as single people.

    Sorry but i'm unsure what LA is.
  • kiwi_1706kiwi_1706 Posts: 11Member Listener
    Thanks... that's really helpful. I will look into that.... if we can't claim as single people, I think that might be a deal breaker... there's no way we could pay bills for two properties, for example... or pay the rent for two properties... 
  • SarahUCESarahUCE Posts: 11Member Courageous
    If you aren’t living together and are running two separate households, your husband can claim as single @kiwi_1706.

    If he wants to avoid claiming UC, he would move, update his ESA address and claim to single and apply for SDP. He can not apply for housing help until the SDP is in place. Once the SDP is sorted he can apply for housing benefit.

    One thing to note is that YOU will then need to claim UC. 
    Benefit adviser for Universal Credit Essentials
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 15,073Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    edited December 4
    @SarahUCE are you sure about that? Husband and wife claiming a benefit as a couple at the moment, not separating just living in different houses but being able to claim as single people? surely they would have to prove that they are not still living as a couple regardless of not living together?  Do you have a link to confirm that please?
  • SarahUCESarahUCE Posts: 11Member Courageous

    For Universal Credit purposes, when one member of a couple is expected to be absent from a household for longer than 6 months then they will not be treated as a couple. 

    Or if they do not reside at the same address then they will not be considered a couple. 

    Tax credits rules do differ and can be far more complex. People can be treated as a couple even when living in different homes. 

    ESA follows similar rules to UC (changed a few years ago) so when he leaves the home with the ESA claim, as he is main claimant, then @kiwi_1706 will need to claim UC to replace this income. 

    Here is the link to the UC ADM about what is considered LTAMC (living together as married couple). Have a read over E4005 and E4152. 


    Of course if this arrangement is only temporary and less than 6 months then it may not change very much at all, as it isn't unusual for one partner to reside somewhere else for a short period of time.

    Benefit adviser for Universal Credit Essentials
  • kiwi_1706kiwi_1706 Posts: 11Member Listener
    Thanks so much for clarifying. I will have a read of that link. It does sound like this is going to get complicated. Urgh!
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