Personal Independence Payment

Authored by , Reviewed by Dr Hayley Willacy | Last edited | Meets Patient’s editorial guidelines

Personal Independence Payment is a tax-free benefit for people aged 16-64, who have care needs or problems with getting about. Personal Independence Payment started to replace Disability Living Allowance for people in this age bracket from 8th April 2013, but Disability Living Allowance is still paid to children.

Note: this leaflet gives a brief summary of Personal Independence Payment and is for guidance only. It does not cover all situations, nor is it a full statement of the law. More detailed information is given at the end of the leaflet - see under Further reading.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is a benefit for people between the ages of 16 and 64 who have a long-term illness or disability, either physical or mental. See the separate leaflet called Disability Living Allowance for Children for those aged under 16 years.

To be able to claim PIP you must have lived in Great Britain for two of the last three years. You must be in Great Britain when you claim PIP and Great Britain must be your normal home. You must have had these difficulties for three months and expect them to last for at least nine months. However, if you are terminally ill there is no such qualifying period. See the separate leaflet called Benefits for the Terminally Ill.

PIP is paid in respect of two types of needs - one is care, the other is mobility. The benefit has two parts based upon these needs. One part is called the Daily Living Component if you need help with personal care. The other part is called the Mobility Component if you need help with getting about. You may qualify for a Daily Living Component, Mobility Component, or both.

Both components are payable at two rates, standard and enhanced, depending on the level of help you need.

Your entitlement to PIP is not usually affected by your finances, savings, or by any other income that you may be getting from work, other benefits, etc.

The Daily Living Component takes account of how much care you need. The sort of care that you must need to be eligible includes the following:

  • Preparing or eating food.
  • Washing, bathing and using the toilet.
  • Dressing and undressing.
  • Reading and communicating.
  • Managing your medicines or treatments.
  • Making decisions about money.
  • Engaging with other people.

Help needed with jobs like housework, shopping or gardening does NOT count.

You may get the mobility component of PIP if you need help with going out or moving around.

Want to speak to a pharmacist?

Book a private telephone consultation with a local pharmacist today

Book now

You must inform the PIP enquiry line (Tel: 0800 121 4433/Textphone: 0800 121 4493 - Monday to Friday, 8 am to 6 pm) if your circumstances change. For example, you may start to need more care, you go into hospital or a care home for more than four weeks or you go abroad for more than four weeks. 

PIP has to be claimed before you reach the age of 65. If you are aged 65 or over and develop care needs, you may be eligible for Attendance Allowance. (See the separate leaflet called Attendance Allowance.)

PIP is tax-free. Payment is usually made directly into a bank account, building society account, Post Office account, or National Savings account. The April 2018 rates are:

  • Daily Living Component:
    • Standard rate - £57.30 per week.
    • Enhanced rate - £85.60 per week.
  • Mobility Component:
    • Lower rate - £22.65 per week.
    • Higher rate - £59.75 per week.

Adults who are already getting Disability Living Allowance (DLA)

All adults who are getting DLA will have to claim for PIP instead. You will not automatically get PIP if you are getting DLA.

Note: if you're getting DLA, you don't need to claim for PIP until you have been contacted by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

New claimants who are not already getting DLA

New claimants, or someone claiming on their behalf, need to ring the DWP PIP claims line on 0800 917 2222, Monday to Friday, 8 am to 6 pm.

If you care for someone who is being paid the Daily Living Component of the PIP, or is intending to claim for it, you may be entitled to Carer's Allowance and you may wish to consider claiming for this at the same time. (See the separate leaflet called Carer's Allowance.)