§ Mr. Skinner
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he will take steps to eliminate the six-month waiting period for back-dating attendance allowance for the relative of a person awarded attendance allowance who passes away; or if he will make a retrospective award.
§ Mr. Newton
No. My right hon. Friend has no plans to make any exception in the application of the six months' qualifying period which has to elapse before entitlement to attendance allowance can begin. To make either of the changes which the hon. Member suggests would alter the purpose of the allowance, which is to help severely disabled people who have long-term needs for attention or supervision. Six months is generally accepted as the period required to establish those needs.