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How to Deal with both Debts and Long Term Illness

Having been suffering from a long term illness can affect your finances. It can lead to despair, which can be physically and mentally exhausting.

When you are dealing with any issues concerning health, you’ll likely feel the burden of managing your expenses and income. Expenses such as medical costs and other unexpected expenses can reap your budget month after month. Besides, you might be unable to work because of your situation. If this happens, your income will no longer be adequate to suffice the essential living costs and additional expenses.

Having been suffering from a long term illness can affect your finances. It can lead to despair, which can be physically and mentally exhausting.

Managing Financial Crisis while on Long Term Sickness

When suffering from illness or any health issues, there are certain ways that you can consider to focus on your health and minimize the anxiety regarding your income and expenses.

Creating a Budget

You may have to look at your financial situation and create a budget. This means you need to trim on the unessential expenses and focus on what you need. You have to prioritize your essential needs, which at this time includes your health and wellness.

Increasing Your Income

If you’re unable to work or may still be working, yet the income cannot cover the sudden medical costs, you may try checking for entitlements or benefits. Perhaps, your pension or any saving and investment may help cover your monthly expense.

Employer or Company Aid during Sick leave

You can also check your company or employer and see if the can have some consideration in place during your time off. They may be able to take some action so as not to jeopardize your source of income.

Statutory Sick Pay

You can qualify for a Statutory Sick Pay or SSP for up to 28 weeks under the following condition:

  1. Unable to come to work due to illness or sickness
  2. Your weekly earning is around £112 or more for two months prior to the date wherein you’re unable to work due to illness.

Some companies have specific guidelines in place for the sick pay process. You must try to reach out to your HR staff and find out more about the options they have for your situation.

Moreover, SSP is credited to your bank account which is similar to how often you get your wage. The statutory benefit amounts to £88.45 per week. This will be repaid by your company for up to 28 weeks.

If in case, you are in charge of the care of someone with long term illness, you are also entitled to certain rights. This means you can request for flexible hours and for a just amount during your time off to aid the vulnerable person.

Income Tax Refund

If you haven’t been working due to long-term sickness or had reduced hours, you can get an income tax refund from last year’s tax payments. This is known as a tax rebate. You might try calling the HMRC or contacting them to see if you are qualified.

State Benefits and Entitlements

There are certain benefits that you can try to check when you are suffering from long term sickness and is unable to work or when you’re the person of care. 

Applying for Grants and Loans

Consider checking charities that can offer grants to people who are dealing with a particular illness. If you wish to find one, you can check the Turn 2 Us. This search service offers help in checking f some available charities or funds that can support with one-off expenses. 

Checking Insurance Policies

You can try scrutinizing your policy to find out whether it includes:

  • paying for terminal illness once you’re diagnosed
  • mortgage payment protection, which covers payment for your mortgage when you are incapable to work
  • lump sum or regular payment aids for critical illness 
  • income protection insurance, which compensates your income when you can’t work

Checking Your Pensions, Savings or Investments

You try checking if you can qualify for a pension. Besides, if you’re one of the low earner, you can claim a pension credit, which is an extra benefit that can help.

In cases of private pension, you can try reaching out to your provider and try to get a percentage of it. If you have investments or savings, which are intended for emergencies, this might cushion your circumstances.

Moreover, though it can be easy to take out money from your savings or pension, you might need to scrutinize how you can cover the amount that you took out. This is because it might have an impact on your finances in the future. If you are uncertain, it’s best that you contact us before making any decision.

Minimize Your Expenses

You must track your spending and prioritize the essential living costs instead. This will help you determine what you can trim on your household budget. Besides, frugality might help you save more and eliminate the non-essentials. This can be achieved by living within your means and buying what you can afford.

Housing Benefit and Mortgage

If you’re renting despite having a low income, you can try securing a housing benefit. Also, you should apply for a discount on reducing your council tax.

If you’re renting despite having a low income, you can try securing a housing benefit. Also, you should apply for a discount on reducing your council tax.

You may also contact your mortgage lender and check if you have insurance in place that can suffice the costs in case you cannot work due to illness.

A government benefit can is also provided in the form of Support for Mortgage Interest. You can be entitled to this benefit if you have any of these:

  1. Jobseeker’s allowance
  2. Employment allowance
  3. Pension credit
  4. Universal Credit
  5. Income support

To claim, you may reach out to Job Centre Plus, the Pension service, or the Universal Credit helpline.

Switching Energy Suppliers

You can try to negotiate for your utility bills such as your electric, gas, or water provider and let them know of your circumstances. They may be able to provide protection or extension so you won’t be cut off in case you fall behind payments.

Switching to other energy suppliers might also save you money, or considering a Direct Debit. Try to check if you can also qualify for a warm home discount or winter fuel payment.

Securing A Blue Badge

Going around which may include hospital appointments can be reaping your pocket real bad. So, you can try to check if the hospital can provide certain offers that can help you with the expenses.

You may also try to check if you can be eligible for a Blue Badge. This will allow you to park for free. Besides, if you are over the 60s, you can be eligible for a bus pass.

Alternatives for Prescriptions and Health Costs

If you reside in Wales, Northern Ireland, or Scotland, prescriptions are free for patients under the Help and Health Costs scheme. 

If you live in England, there is a fee amounting to £8.40 per prescription. However, this is waived and are free for cancer patients. To be exempted from the charges you can apply for the exemption certificate by letting your GP complete an FP92A form. Moreover, you can try to secure aid for other costs into the NHS Help with Health Costs scheme.

Asking Help from Relatives and Friends

Dealing with the anxiety of your health condition certainly affects your finances. If you find it difficult to manage, you can ask for a third party to overshadow your interests through the power of attorney.

Getting Debt Help

If you are suffering from illness and find it hard to focus on both your health and debt, its time to consider debt advice. We can give you practical and realistic solutions that can help you manage your situation without stress anxiety. We offer advice and solution that is patterned after your needs and financial circumstances. Should you need any help and advice call us on  0800 193 1024.