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Guide to disability related expenses

Frequently asked questions

Why must I receive disability benefits to claim DRE?

You must be receiving disability benefits before claiming DRE as this is what the Care Act 2014 (opens new window) says: "Where disability-related benefits are taken into account, the local authority should make an assessment and allow the person to keep enough benefit to pay for necessary disability-related expenditure to meet any needs which are not being met by the local authority." Disability benefits are paid to people who have disabilities or illnesses and need extra help that people without disabilities do not need. You receive the benefit to help you pay for the cost of receiving any extra help. This could include a person who helps you, or an expense that you pay for because of your disability, such as the examples mentioned in.

What makes an expense necessary?

An expense is necessary if it is something you need to pay for rather than something that you want to pay for. If it something that is your choice to pay for, for example, buying specific types of food when you have no dietary requirement for it, the expense would not be necessary.

What makes an expense reasonable?

An expense is reasonable when it is a fair price. For example, if specialised shoes were something you needed, and you could buy these for £30 but you had submitted a DRE claim for a pair you bought for £100, this cost would not be reasonable. However, the £30 would be allowed.

My friend has been allowed an expense as DRE but I haven't. Why is this?

The Care Act 2014 (opens new window) says that DRE should be person-centred and looked at on an individual basis. This is because every person is different and can have different disabilities, illnesses, and care needs. No two people are the same and therefore, no two DRE claims will be the same.

How can I get help with completing the form or gathering evidence?

If you need any help completing the form or getting evidence, you can contact the DRE team on 01603 222133 option 4 or by emailing We can then arrange for a member of our Money Support Service to visit you. They will fill in the form for you and they can also help you to contact any of your providers so you can get evidence, such as bills or invoices. The Money Support Service will also be able to look at whether you could receive any grants or other financial assistance that could help you.

My practitioner did not mention DRE as part of my care review, what do I do?

You can contact the DRE team directly on 01603 222133 option 4 or by emailing to start your DRE journey. The team will be able to talk about what DRE means and what things you have to pay for could be looked at as part of your DRE claim. If you need further help, they can arrange this for you.

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