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As your child with special needs grows up, your Domiciliary Care Allowance will cease when they reach 16. This is currently under review by the Department of Social Protection as the government want to change the age for when Domiciliary Care Allowance ends and Disability Allowance begins.

If you son or daughter is 15-years old then I recommend contacting the Department of Social Protection to find out your child’s rights. It is also important that you find out the waiting time on processing Disability Allowance as some of my clients have been stopped their Domiciliary Care Allowance and six months later they still haven’t received Disability Allowance.

Unlike the Domiciliary Allowance, Disability Allowance is a Means Tested payment for people with disabilities who are unable to work.

Your child’s income and capital will be taken into account. If your child has received significant compensation, inheritance money from a well-intended grandparent, or has a large amount of money saved in their name, then this will affect their entitlements.

This is why it is so important that you have a special needs trust to protect their future entitlement.

If you believe your 16 year old is unable to manage their own affairs, you can be appointed to receive this payment on their behalf. This payment still belongs to your teenager and you are legally obliged to use the money for their benefit. Investing a proportion of your child’s Disability Allowance in to a Trust is the best way to save for their future. This will ensure an adequate sum of money for their care when you are no longer able to care for them.