Children in Northamptonshire to get extra help tracking down unclaimed money

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A benefits expert is to help about 400 disabled children from Northamptonshire and their families claim money they are entitled to from the state.

The officer will be employed at Community Law Service in Northampton town centre as well as doing outreach work.

They will be able to point families towards money they are not already receiving through grants and benefits and appeal decisions that have gone against them.

A spokeswoman for Community Law Service said: “Bringing up a child with a disability is about triple the cost of raising a non-disabled child.

“There are lost of more expensive areas, such as higher heating bills, more use of the family car and attendance of special activity groups.

“If we can successfully claim money they were unaware of, it can reduce pressure and stress on the entire family.

“Sometimes it can even mean one of the parents can reduce their hours and spend more time at home caring for their child.”

The new children’s welfare rights worker will be funded by BBC Children in Need, which has given enough cash for the next three years.

During that time, Community Law Service hopes to claim £500,000 for 400 children.

Need for the role is evidenced by the fact four in ten disabled children live in poverty, while social services often lacks expertise in this area.