Benefits and disability: ‘I’ll never cohabit again, to protect myself’
Moving Day, new home, Valentine's Day, unpacking boxes, newlyweds concept. Couple Celebrating Moving Into New Home With wine.

Benefits exist to support people in times of need. But for some disabled people, household means-testing has led to benefits being taken away making them uncomfortably reliant on their partner and in debt due to the extra living expenses disabled people incur. Rachel Charlton-Dailey finds some people have vowed never to marry or cohabit again.

Emma moved out of her home and into his. She was excited but living together meant that her income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) was immediately stopped.

ESA is granted to adults who struggle to find work because of illness or disability.

Emma, who has fibromyalgia, ulcerative colitis, and a visual impairment, is unable to work and received £114.10 a week when she lived alone. But when she moved in with her boyfriend, their income and savings were taken into consideration jointly, meaning Emma no longer qualified.

From that point onwards, she was expected to rely financially on her partner.

“I never wanted him to support me but being ineligible for benefits put me in a vulnerable position,” she says.

Read more on the BBC.

This is an external article from our library

Everyone is talking about caregiving, but it can still be difficult to find meaningful information and real stories that go deep. We read (and listen to and watch and look at) the best content about caregiving and bring you a curated selection.

Have a great story about care work? Use our contact form to submit it to us so we can share it with the community!

Related Articles

What Is Compassion Fatigue?

What Is Compassion Fatigue?

“Since the pandemic, individuals are coping with so many different forms of stress that might be activating a compassionate part of them that they...

Popular categories

Finances
Burnout
After Caregiving
Housing
Relationships
Finding Meaning
Planning
Dying
Finding Support
Work
Grief

Don't see what you're looking for? Search the library

Share your thoughts

0 Comments

Share your thoughts and experiences

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Join our communities

Whenever you want to talk, there’s always someone up in one of our Facebook communities.

These private Facebook groups are a space for support and encouragement — or getting it off your chest.

Join our newsletter

Thoughts on care work from Cori, our director, that hit your inbox each Monday morning (more-or-less).

There are no grand solutions, but there are countless little ways to make our lives better.

Share your insights

Caregivers have wisdom and experience to share. Researchers, product developers, and members of the media are eager to understand the nature of care work and make a difference.

We have a group specifically to connect you so we can bring about change.