We aren't benefits specialists, but we can point you in the right direction!
Disability Benefits Helpline: 0800 88 22 00 (or 0800 220674 for Northern Ireland)
Provides information and advice about disability and carers benefits, their qualifying conditions and procedures. They can provide application forms, advice about form-filling and information about other organisations that may be able to help. Lines are open 8.30pm to 6.30pm Monday to Friday.
Action for ME also provides advice for over 18s - call 0845 123 2314
Citizens Advice Bureau
The CAB is a national organisation run by volunteers and can offer help in specific areas such as housing, education, employment, law, benefits. Details of the nearest one to you can be found on the website, or call 08444 111 444 (08444 77 20 20 in Wales).
Contact a Family
This is a charity for families with disabled children. They have two welfare rights specialists who can give advice on DLA and other benefits. Telephone the free helpline on 0808 808 3555.
Benefits and Work
Provides information and links about welfare benefits and employment law for people with long-term physical or mental health conditions, their carers and support workers.
Dial is an independent network of local disability information and advice services run by and for disabled people. To you're your local office, call the national helpline number 01302 310123 9am to 5pm Monday to Thursday and 9am to 4pm Friday or visit the website for details http://www.scope.org.uk/dial
Disabled Persons Tax Credit
The information line can give advice about claims, form-filling, estimates of entitlement and help with queries about existing claims. 0345 300 3900 8.00 am to 8.00 pm, Monday to Friday, 8.00 am to 4.00 pm Saturday
Can provide free advice and representation at appeals. Call Community Legal Advice on 0845 345 4 345 or go to the website to find your local contact. Make sure to ask specifically for a specialist in welfare benefits and appeals.
Community Legal Services
Visit the website or call 0845 345 4345. Make sure that you will be getting free advice before agreeing to see anyone, as solicitors may charge, depending on your income, savings, etc. In addition, make sure you ask for solicitors who are specialists in welfare benefits, otherwise you may find yourself being advised by someone who has had just one day's training in the entire benefits system.
The Family Fund Trust
Provides limited grants for families of severely disabled children for items such as play equipment, white goods, hospital travelling expenses and holidays. For information on qualifying conditions and applications, visit their website, call 08449 744 099 or write to The Family Fund Trust, 4 Alpha Court, Monks Cross Drive, York YO32 9WN.
Disability Rights UK
There is a useful section on their website offering help if you are claiming benefits. You can write to them at 12 City Forum, 250 City Road, London, EC1V 8AF or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Who to contact in the event of a judicial complaint
Regional Tribunal Judge
Judge Jessica Burns
Birmingham SSCSA Tribunals
Wales & South West
Judge Jim Wood
Cardiff SSCSA Tribunals,
Judge Ken Kirkwood
Glasgow SSCSA Tribunals,
Liverpool SSCSA Tribunals,
Judge David Wall
Leeds SSCSA Tribunals,
Judge Pauline Gray
Nottingham SSCSA Tribunals,
Judge Jeremy Bennett
Sutton SSCSA Tribunals,
Please note that we are currently without a Regional Tribunal Judge (RTJ) in our North-West Region. The District Tribunal Judges are currently covering the RTJ duties until a successor is appointed. Any judicial complaints to this region should be marked for the attention of ‘The Regional Tribunal Judge'.
Extensive advice on welfare including benefits, social services help, grants and other financial support for people with severe ME (as well as their carer's and families) is provided in the comprehensive reference book Severe ME/CFS: A Guide to Living by Emily Collingridge.
The PIP (Personal Independence Payment) Assessment Guide is a Department for Work and Pensions guide for providers carrying out assessments for PIP.
And although DLA has been replaced by PIP, the following supplement may still be useful to refer to as it is specific to ME/CFS: DLA Supplement to Severe ME/CFS: A Guide to Living