Older people's participation in extra-cost disability benefits
The targeting of an UK extra-cost disability benefit for older people, Attendance Allowance, is analyzed using longitudinal data from the British Household Panel Survey. First, a binary model of benefit participation is used to investigate whether receipt is responsive to the onset of disability. Second, matching estimators are used to evaluate the consequences of missed participation on later financial wellbeing. Results indicate that participation is highly responsive to the onset of disability, although the chance of delays in receipt emerges. Personal characteristics unrelated to eligibility also appear to influence benefit receipt, translating into sizeable differences in the amount of cash support received. The comparison of recipients with observationally equivalent non-recipients confirms that timely participation reduces disabled older people's financial strain.
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