Local welfare assistance

Qualifying criteria for local welfare assistance

1. You may be able to get a local welfare assistance payment if you’re getting one of these benefits (or are likely to get one in the next six weeks if you’re due to leave care): 

  • Income support
  • Employment and support allowance
  • Jobseeker’s allowance
  • Pension credit
  • Universal credit - you and your partner (if you have one) must not be working more than nine hours (combined) per week.

Also, one of the following must apply, you:

  • Are leaving residential or institutional care, eg a care home or prison
  • Are being resettled into a new home by your council or a voluntary organisation following an unsettled period in your life
  • Are looking after someone who is ill, disabled or just out of prison
  • Need help to stay in your home and not go into residential care or hospital
  • Need help because you or your family face exceptional pressure - eg because of a family breakdown or illness

2.  You can apply for a crisis payment if you:

  • Don’t have enough money to meet your or your family’s immediate needs after an emergency or disaster
  • Think there will be serious damage or risk to your or your family’s health or safety without the payment
  • There is no other help available to you
  • If you or someone in your house has been affected by the Coronavirus (COVID-19), you can also apply for assistance.

Crisis payments to help pay for:

  • Food
  • Essential clothing
  • Pre-paid meter fuel debt and, in some circumstances reconnection charges
  • Some travel expenses
  • Some essential items destroyed as a result of disaster


Crisis payments and community care grants are discretionary. Each application is assessed on its individual merits and no two applications can be compared. Awards are also subject to overall funding limitations within the local welfare assistance scheme. The council reserves the right to change the level of and reasons for awards subject to budgetary pressures.