Benefits & Tax Credits – An Introduction


Applying for benefits and knowing which might be appropriate in your situation can be confusing. This leaflet will help you understand what options are available.


“The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has made it clear on a number of occasions over the years that people with ME/CFS are entitled to apply for a full range of sickness and disability benefits…”

We provide information about Statutory Sick Pay, Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) the out of work benefit, Personal Independence Payment (PIP) the disability benefit paid regardless of employment status, and, Universal Credit (UC) which is replacing means-tested benefits.

Please see the more detailed application guides, available from the Benefits and Insurance category of the website shop, when you decide to make an application or are considering an appeal.

Telephone Helpline

The ME Association telephone helpline – ME Connect – is available every day of the year, during the hours of 10am-12noon, 2pm-4pm and 7pm-9pm. Please phone: 0344 576 5326 if you have any questions or would simply like to talk to someone who is there to listen.

Please note this leaflet is a download. You can read it on-screen and save to your computer, phone or other device and can attach it to any email you might need to send. But you will need access to a printer if you wish it printed.



0344 576 5326

Available every day of the week between these times: 10am - 12noon, 2pm - 4pm and 7pm - 9pm.

Calls cost the same as other standard landline numbers (starting 01 or 02). If you have a call package for your landline or mobile phone then calls will normally come out of your inclusive minutes.