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What do you need to get DLA?

(12 Posts)
yukoncher Fri 03-Jun-11 00:44:34

Hi all.
My 4 1/2 yr old son has special needs, probably aged 2-3 speech ability and seems autistic in every possible way, still in nappies, rarely concentrates on a conversation, unless it involves repeating something 50x that he finds entertaining :-p will be staying in nursery an extra year as not ready to start school until support is in place.

He sees the paediatric consultant for the first time later this month to try and begin to diagnose him.

Someone from Senco said we could apply for DLA.

Asked a support worker about it today and she said she thinks you'd have to be 'statemented' to get DLA.
Unsure what 'statemented' really is. Would the preschool write a letter to confirm all we say?

Would we stand a chance of getting DLA?

Anyone been through a similar thing?

Also, from what I describe would DS be on lower rate? about £20 a week?

Thanks in advance!

catherinea1971 Fri 03-Jun-11 06:56:28

Hi Yukoncher, your 'support worker' is incorrect DLA is awarded based on a persons needs. DLA for children is awarded if the childs needs are more that that of a child without problems of the same age. The cerebra guide is very helpful. My son was awarded DLA aged 2.5 he had difficulties with speech, understanding, still in nappies, very challenging behaviour, doesn't sleep to name a few of his problems, he has since been diagnosed with ASD.
A statement is in fact a 'statement of special education needs' or SEN, this is a legal document that says what special needs a child has and what help that child needs in order to access an education.
Hope that helps a little I don't think I have explained very well, bit sleep deprived lolsmile

Al1son Fri 03-Jun-11 09:20:03

I second the above post.
A statement of special educational needs is a legal document about what extra support a child is entitled to in school or early years provision because they cannot access the curriculum without it. It has nothing to do with DLA.

In order to qualify for DLA Care your child must need significantly more care than another child of the same age. This care must be needed for several hours on most days.

This is the Cerebra guide. It talks you through the process really well.

yukoncher Fri 03-Jun-11 09:32:01

well thanks catherinea!
any information helps me smile
She's for housing support anyway, but helps with setting up benefits.
So gave me DLA phone number and said she'd arrange CAB appointment where I can have help filling it in.

So, which evidence did they need in your application for DLA?
Did they need the statement? and is that easy to get?
Do you need a supporting letter, or do they contact child's health professionals if they please?

yukoncher Fri 03-Jun-11 09:35:49

Thanks Alison!
Who does the statement?
Seems like I really need to take charge of this. They're saying DS isn't ready to start school in sep, but I think he'd be okay with a helper.
Can I start writing a statment? and get other people to sign in agreement? Do you need a lawyer?

Thanks for this link! smile

chocjunkie Fri 03-Jun-11 10:01:46

this is a link which explains it briefly.
I haven't applied for a statement for DD yet (but will probably do at some point), so only limited knowlegde. but there are lots of mumsnetters on this board who have more experience. just hang in there.

Al1son Fri 03-Jun-11 10:07:14

I think your first port of call needs to be finding your local Parent Partnership Group. It's their job to give you all this sort of information and to advise you about how things work in your local area.

Basically you or the pre-school write to the LEA asking them to assess your child in terms of SEN. If they agree to assess him they request reports from all the professionals who work with him and use them to decide if he needs extra support above what the school is able to provide from their own resources. This support is then detailed in a legally binding statement of SEN.

You'd only need a lawyer if you felt the need to appeal against their decision or go to tribunal.

You can download a copy of the SEN Code of Practice here.

starfishmummy Fri 03-Jun-11 10:31:44

Picking up the evidence needed for DLA - although I know a lot of mumsnetters send in additional reports and evidence with their applications/renewals you don't always need to. We never have; although maybe DS's needs are more clear cut thate some (he has physical disability).

TheNinjaGooseIsOnAMission Fri 03-Jun-11 10:59:27

have a look at ipsea for all you need to know about statementing, if your ds will need lots of help at school, especially 1:1 get the ball rolling now and apply for a statutory assessment yourself as the whole process takes 6 months from start to finish as a minimum, the statement is done by the sen team at the lea if they decide he needs one and they will ask you who you want to be contacted about your ds' sen. Do get in touch with parent partnership as pp advised, they will be able to offer support.

dla forms will ask you who you want them to contact about your ds, this can be the preschool if you think they will be supportive, they ask that someone else fills a section of the form at the end, this can be a professional who works with your child or a friend or grandparent. You don't need a statement of sen, that is completely seperate so don't worry about that but if you have any reports that talk about ds' additional care needs than you can send a copy of them in with the form. Another vote here for looking at the cerebra guide, it will make things much clearer as to what sort of thing you should be telling the dla people about your ds.

runningonmt Sat 04-Jun-11 16:10:46

What do you need to get DLA .........

1) Nerves of steel and heaps of time to complete the form.

2) Any additional information to support your application from independant people (doctors, therapists, support workers etc....) I was told that although I know by DS better than anyone, my opinion counted for very little as I stood to financially gain by an award so therefore it is assumed that I am a compusive liar, however my sons doctor or school are more honest.

3) A large glass of wine or box of chocolates for when you have finished filling it in as it can be very very depressing listing everything you child cant do compared with a child of a similar age without your childs condition.

4) Understanding that the job of the assessor is to find a reason not to award DLA rather than look for a reason to award it (cynical -me ?)

5) Patience of a saint while you wait for the response.

6) Preparation to go to apeal when you are turned down (and I mean when and not if). Many many many people will agree that most people get turned down on their first application and a large number of those have not got the fight left in them to go to appeal. You can only apeal if the assessment was not made correctly NOT simply becasue you dont agree with their decision.

7) The skin of a rhino to stop the hurtful comments and opinions from the british media, friends,neighbours and even members of your own family that if you are awarded DLA it is becasue you are a free-loading drain on society who are out for an easy buck.

NEVER assume the assessor has any understanding of any children never mind children with your childs specific needs. State even the most obvious stuff. Enclose a care diary which honestly outlines a typical few days in your childs life - DO NOT OVER-EXAGERATE - be honest - if you are awarded DLA it is because your childs needs are deemed severe enough to warrent it . If you do over-inflate their needs you just make it harder for genuine cases to be assessed fairly.

Good luck getting the help that you need.. x

colditz Sat 04-Jun-11 16:19:04

I'm with running on MT

You need to put aside an entire day for that fucking form. Although as long as you fill it in as if the assessor is Vicky Pollard, you should be ok.

Calally Sat 04-Jun-11 18:25:01

my sons social worker put me in touch with a carers support group who filled the forms in for me, i just told them all about ds. im in the process of getting ds's reassessed due to a change in circumstances. took ages to get dla processed. re statement, sons social worker was involved in sorting this for me. this took ages aswell, ds was already have through primary 1 before it was completed. only for the social worker putting a referral through, he wouldnt have had a school place. lost count of the number of phone calls i made for both dla, and statement. good luck

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