What is Domiciliary Care Allowance?

Domiciliary Care Allowance is a monthly payment of €309.50 per month by the Department of Social Protection to a parent who proves that their child under the age of 16, needs a greater degree of care in comparison to a child of a similar age.

In recent times, this allowance has been getting harder to get approved. I think a more accurate description is when you prove your child needs a substantial amount of care in excess of a child of a similar age.

Domiciliary Care Allowance is not means-tested. If you are granted Domiciliary Care Allowance, you may also be entitled to a range of entitlements such as Carer’s Allowance, Carer’s Benefit, Incapacity Child Tax Credit, Household Benefits Package and potentially more.

Domiciliary Care Allowance payment dates for 2022?

Domiciliary Care Allowance is awarded from the month after your application and your payment will be on the third Tuesday of every month. A person may apply for the payment to be backdated by up to 6 months if they can show a good reason for a delay in applying.

If you have more than one child with special needs, then you have to apply separately for each child. You will then receive €309.50 for each child. One other important piece of information about Domiciliary Care Allowance is that your payment is not taxable by the Revenue.

How to complete the Domiciliary Care Allowance Form?

Rather than just completing each section, I strongly recommend that you provide additional support to strengthen your application. As a parent, you should write a daily log that shows any additional support you provide for your child, especially around:

  • Communication & learning
  • Feeding & food sensitivities
  • Any delays in dressing, washing and hygiene
  • Any additional learning or schooling issues

The more relevant information you can supply, the better. Write down any extra measures you take to keep your child safe and out of harm’s way. Above all, make sure you demonstrate clearly how you support your child and provide extra care above that of a child who would be of a similar age.

Does your child see a professional therapist?

If so, document your appointments over the last 12-months. I also recommend that you go back to your GP, therapist, consultant, SNA and other professionals that assist your child and ask them to write reports to support your application. This can be a deciding factor in getting your cased approved. It will be hard for the Department to reject your case when qualified professionals provide supporting evidence.

Why are parents finding it difficult to get this payment?

It is a combination of the rules tightening up and parents not applying correctly. The Department uses a set of guidelines in determining the medical eligibility of your son or daughter for this allowance. Each application is assessed individually, taking account of all the information supplied in the application form.

“Focus your application on the extra care you have to provide for your child, not on your child’s diagnoses or disability.”

Domiciliary Care Allowance waiting time 2022?

Domiciliary Care Allowance has a target of deciding 90% of new claims within 10 weeks of receipt. 8-12 weeks is a good guide on when you should hear back on your application. I would also recommend photocopying everything you send to the Department just in case your file goes “missing!”

Where can parents get additional support?

Citizen information can answer any general enquiry you may have around Domiciliary Care Allowance. I find that parents get great support from other parents and groups such as DCA Warriors, a fabulous Facebook group supporting parents through the process.

Can Domiciliary Care Allowance be reviewed?

The Department of Social Protection can review Domiciliary Care Allowance to see if you still meet the criteria. This can be stressful, but similar to when you applied, have all your information ready, reports, supporting letters and be prepared.

When does Domiciliary Care Allowance stop?

Domiciliary Care Allowance stops when a child turns 16, so your last payment will be for the month of your child’s 16th birthday. This is the point when your child can apply for Disability Allowance which will be their own payment. Parents can continue to receive their other entitlements such as Carer’s Allowance, Carer’s Benefit, Incapacity Child Tax Credit, etc.

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For a full list of entitlements, download our Free Booklet: A-Z Guide of Special Needs Entitlements. https://www.financialwellbeing.ie/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/2021-A-Z-Entitlements-Booklet.pdf

How to apply for Domiciliary Care Allowance?

You can request the application form from the Domiciliary Care Allowance section by phone: (071) 915 7100. You can download it by clicking here https://www.gov.ie/en/form/4fc05-domiciliary-care-allowance-application-form-dom-care-1/

Alternatively, send me an email and I will forward the Domiciliary Care Allowance application to you.

What to do if you are turned down for Domiciliary Care Allowance?

The most important tip I can give you is appeal, appeal, appeal. If you believe your child is entitled to this payment, get prepared and put your most robust case forward. You need to appeal the decision within 21 days to the independent Social Welfare Appeals Office.

 

Want to find out more about other hidden entitlements?

Then join us at one of our free Special Needs Trust Planning Webinars. Click on the link below to register for this zoom event.