We provide a free, AQS accredited, information and advice casework service to Deaf and Disabled people living in Merton.

We support in the following areas:

  • Welfare Benefits (excluding benefit checks)
  • Social Care
  • Concessionary Travel 
  • Grant applications 
  • Housing - closed to new housing cases from April 2024 until further notice. 

 

Please look at each section below to learn more about what we do and what we don’t do.

We believe that society disables people with health conditions. Therefore, we work within the social model of disability and an independence charter, co-designed with Disabled people. This means that we may support you doing something rather than us doing it for you.

 

Welfare Benefits 

We help Disabled people living in Merton with filling in application forms, attending medical assessments, reviews, appeals and attending tribunals.

We support with:

  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
  • Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Universal Credit (UC)
  •  

Other benefits we may be able to help with:

  • Attendance Allowance
  • Bereavement Benefits
  • Carer’s Allowance (only if you are a Deaf or Disabled person and a carer)
  • Council Tax Reduction
  • Housing Benefit
  • Overpayments, but only if you do not have any consumer credit debts
  • Pension Credit
  • Short-term assistance, such as accessing Merton’s Local Welfare Support Scheme and Budgeting Loans / Budgeting Advances
  • Underpayments

We can also provide benefits checks to ensure that you are receiving all that you are entitled to. 

We may be able to help with other benefit enquiries as well. If we can’t help, we will give you the details of people who can.

 

Social Care

We help Disabled people in Merton to navigate social care processes. This may include:

We may also be able to help with the following:

  • Advice on entitlement to Direct Payments
  • Community care complaints
  • Hospital discharge planning
  • Residential and nursing care: assessments and charging
  • Services provided under section 117 Mental Health Act 1983

 

Concessionary Travel 

We can help you complete forms for the following:

  • Freedom Pass.
  • Blue Badge.
  • Taxicard.
  • Dial-a-Ride.

If you automatically qualify for any of the above, we may encourage and support you to complete the form yourself rather than us completing the form for you.

 

Grant Applications

We can help with grant applications, for example to Wimbledon Guild for help with things like food, warm clothing, utility bills, essential furniture and household appliances.

We will always check that you are eligible to apply for a grant before completing an application form.

 

Housing 

We are currently closed to new housing cases but we can usually work with Disabled people to explore aids and adaptations and Disabled Facilities Grant applications. 

 

What we DO NOT do

  • If you receive Direct Payments to pay for your social care, we are not able to help with any aspect of managing Direct Payments
  • For benefits cases, we do not help with applications to the Upper Tribunal
  • For Universal Credit, if you want help with the initial online application, we will signpost you to Citizens Advice
  • Neighbour disputes
  • NHS complaints
  • Any complaint, where the cause for complaint took place more than 6 months ago

 

How to book an appointment with us

If you would like support you can get in touch in the following ways:

  1. Give us a call - 0203 397 3119 - One of our welcoming members of staff will be covering reception. They will take your details and information about the issue that you need support with. You will get a call back informing if we are able to support and when you can expect an appointment.
  2. Email us - info@mertoncil.org.uk - Send us an email including your name, contact details and information about the issue that you need support with. Please include any key dates. You will get an email back confirming receipt and you will hear back about an appointment or if we can support.
  3. Send us a Text or SMS - 0779 671 2502 - If you are Deaf or hard of hearing you can text us and we will get back to you.

 

Information to note about appointments:

  • We do not operate a drop-in service and all face-to-face meetings are by appointment only.
  • We will carry out a risk assessment with you before we meet face-to-face, to keep you and us safe.
  • It is very likely that you will have to wait for your first appointment. Waiting times vary throughout the year but can be anywhere between 2-12 weeks. We always book appointments as soon as we can.
  • If you live outside of Merton we can usually put you in touch with another organisation that can help. You can also see our useful information page which lists other advice organisations - https://www.mertoncil.org.uk/useful-information/chapter-1-advice-advocacy-an/

 

For organisations & professionals - How to make a referral to Merton CIL 

Read more about how to make a referral here.