Cover the costs of practical support for disabled people in the workplace

Often described as the government’s ‘best keep secret’, the Access to Work scheme provides non-repayable grants to cover the costs of practical support for disabled people in the workplace.

Although an employer must make what are termed as ‘reasonable adjustments’ to ensure you are not substantially disadvantaged when doing your job, extra help can be obtained with an Access to Work grant. Details on what these ‘reasonable adjustments’ are can be found here.

An Access to Work grant can pay for:

  • Special equipment, adaptations or support worker services to help you do things like answer the phone or go to meetings
  • Help getting to and from work

Who is eligible?

To get help from Access to Work you must:

  • Have a disability or health condition (physical or mental) that makes it hard for you to do parts of your job or get to and from work
  • Be 16 or over
  • Live in England, Scotland or Wales – there’s a different system in Northern Ireland

You also need to have a paid job or be about to start or return to one. A paid job could include:

  • Self-employment
  • An apprenticeship
  • A work trial or work experience
  • An internship

What you’ll get

You’ll be offered support based on your needs. This may include a grant to help cover the costs of practical support in the workplace or getting to and from work. The grant can help pay for items or services you need, including:

  • Adaptations to the equipment you use
  • Special equipment or software
  • British Sign Language interpreters and video relay service support, lip speakers or note takers
  • Adaptations to your vehicle so you can get to work
  • Taxi fares to work or a support worker if you can’t use public transport
  • A support worker or job coach to help you in your workplace
  • A support service if you have a mental health condition – this could include counselling or job coaching
  • Disability awareness training for your colleagues
  • The cost of moving your equipment if you change location or job

Find out more

Previously the maximum amount you could claim each year was £43,100. This was now been increased and from April 1 2018 the limit is now £57,200.

To find out more about Access to Work, please contact us as we believe that this is a great scheme that can really make a difference for disabled people. Alternatively, if you want to apply directly on the government Web site click here.

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