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Living with Limited Mobility: Financial Aid for Adjustable Beds

Trawling through information on financial aid can be difficult and tiring. So to make it a little bit easier, we’ve compiled a list of government financial aid for those seeking an electric adjustable bed in Ireland & the UK.

 

Ireland – The Mobility Aids Grant Scheme:

The Mobility Aids Grant Scheme was created to help people with mobility problems afford the equipment necessary to live comfortably. It helps you to pay for any essential mobility equipment for your home, including an adjustable bed. The maximum amount available is €6,000.

Applications can be made to your local authority, who may ask you for an Occupational Therapist’s assessment. The local authority can organise this for you, or you may arrange your own.

If you seek your own assessment for the disabled equipment grant and your application is successful, you are then given €200 of the grant to cover this cost.

To qualify for the disabled equipment grant, your entire households’ income must be less than €30,000. The scheme takes into account the property owner’s/tenant’s income and your partner’s income.

If any other adults between the age of 18 and 23 (and not in full-time education), are living in the house, their income will also be a deciding factor. However, the scheme doesn’t take into account social welfare payments, with the exception of the Jobseeker’s Benefit.

Important to keep in mind is that if your income is over €30,000, you may still be eligible, as you can detract €5,000 from your income:

• each person living in your house under the age of 18.
• any individuals between the age of 18 & 23 in full-time education (or a Solas apprenticeship).
• if you are being cared for by a relative on a full-time basis.

 

Ireland – VAT Refunds

If you have a recognised disability, you may be able to claim back the Value Added Tax (VAT) you have paid on appliances and aids which help you with mobility and safety, as there is a VAT exemption for the disabled.

These products must be necessary for you to carry out daily activities at home or work, such as an adjustable bed for sleeping, and be for your exclusive use.

To apply you must fill in claim form VAT 61A and include supporting documentation, such as original receipts/invoices. This is then sent to the Revenue Commissioners office. Claims must be made within four years from the end of the taxable period in which you bought the item

 

England & Wales – Equipment Grant

In England, while grants are available for the purchase of essential equipment, they are provided by individual local authorities and as such there are no overall guidelines. Each local authority may set their own conditions and criteria for deciding who gets financial aid, and how much that aid will be. However, they must publish a policy explaining what kind of help is available, and the process for applying as well as the criteria.

Most local authorities assess if there is a risk to your health, safety or independence. This means that the risk of you harming yourself in your home, being unable to complete daily tasks safely and being prevented from interacting with your social network is assessed by the local authority.

Some of the equipment available to purchase from this grant includes adaptations, improvements & repairs to accommodation, demolition, replacement of demolished accommodation, as well as providing necessary equipment or financial aid to purchase said equipment. For more information, contact your local authority – visit local.direct.go.uk to discover which local authority you need to apply to.

 

UK – VAT Relief

The scheme allows you to purchase products to help you increase your mobility, safety and comfort, such as grab rails or stairlifts, without paying the Value Added Tax (VAT). To qualify for this scheme, you must have a physical impairment which prevents you from carrying out everyday activities, be terminally ill or have a condition that’s treated as a chronic illness, such as diabetes.

Additionally, VAT exemptions apply to any installation fees, repairs & maintenance or any spare parts and accessories. You will need to confirm in writing that you meet these conditions, on a form from your supplier. Furthermore, you don’t have to pay VAT if you import items that fit the criteria. Ensure that you write ‘Goods for Disabled People: Relief Claimed’ on the package or alert your freight service. If you import these in person, declare them to Customs.

We hope you have found this blog useful, and hopefully, you’ve picked up some helpful information to help you purchase your own adjustable bed. If you have heard of other possible sources of funding leave a comment below. Share this post with those who may find it of use!