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Families of deceased beneficiaries

The scheme provides support to spouses, civil partners and long-term partners of a deceased beneficiary.

You could apply for:

  • bereavement payment
  • discretionary one-off payment towards Counselling
  • discretionary one-off payment towards a funeral grant
  • discretionary one-off payment towards employment training 
  • financial and benefits advice
  • income top up and child payments
  • winter fuel payment

Bereavement payment

The government has agreed that eligible spouses, civil partners and long-term partners should get a one-off payment of £10,000.

Check if you're eligible 

You're eligible if you meet all of the following criteria:

  • You were married, in a civil partnership or a long-term relationship with your spouse or partner when they died, and you were living together at the time.
  • Your spouse or partner was allocated as an ‘English’ beneficiary of the Skipton Fund or MFET.
  • It is likely that stage 1 or stage 2 hepatitis C and/or HIV contributed to the death of your spouse or partner.

You will not qualify for payment if you were divorced, your civil partnership had been dissolved, or you were separated at the time.

How to apply

If your spouse or partner died on or after 1 November 2017, you must inform us within 6 months of their death.

To make a claim, you need to download and complete an EIBSS bereavement application form (PDF: 155KB).

Alternatively, we can post an application form to you. To request this, contact us.

We'll ask you to confirm:

  • your identity
  • you were the beneficiary’s spouse or partner
  • you were living with them at the time of their death
  • that the infection contributed to the death

To do this you will need:

  • proof of ID (for example, a copy of your passport, driving license or birth certificate)
  • proof of your current address (for example, a copy of your bank statement or utility bill)
  • the death certificate of your late spouse/partner (photocopies are acceptable)
  • evidence to show that you were co-habiting at the time of your spouse/partner's death if this is not stated on the death certificate (for example, a joint bank statement or joint council tax bill), or if not available a completed Referee Form (Appendix 1 of the application form)
  • a letter from a registered medical professional confirming that on the balance of probability, infection with hepatitis C or HIV contributed to the death of your spouse/partner, if the death certificate does not confirm this.

Doctor's Evidence

You'll need to provide evidence that the hepatitis stage 1 or stage 2 and/or HIV, or treatment for it, contributed to death of your spouse or partner.

This should be from the hepatitis C or HIV specialist who treated them. This may not be possible if the death was some time ago.

In this case, you can nominate another hepatologist/infectious diseases consultant. This is only if they have access to your spouse or partner’s records. You can also nominate your spouse or partner’s GP.

We'll then contact the nominated doctor. We ask them to explain why they believe that hepatitis C or HIV contributed to the spouse or partner’s death. We may consult another hepatitis C or HIV specialist and clinical records to verify.

If your spouse or partner lived outside England when they died, we may contact their clinical specialist in that country about the cause of death.

What happens next

We'll aim to provide a decision on all applications within 30 working days. It may take longer if we need to ask you or your doctor for further information.

If the evidence clearly supports your answers on the application form, we'll approve your application for support. You will then receive the lump sum.

If your application is unsuccessful

If you wish to appeal the decision, you should contact us within 3 months from the date on the letter. We may consider appeals received after 3 months, but only if you can provide a good reason for not contacting us earlier. You can find more information on how to appeal. 

Discretionary one-off payments

Funeral Grant

To claim a funeral grant your partner would need to be registered with EIBSS.

A discretionary payment of up to £4,500 is available for the person arranging the funeral, when an infected beneficiary has passed away.

To request this discretionary payment, complete the funeral grant discretionary one-off payment application form (PDF: 152KB)

Counselling

A discretionary one-off payment of up to £900 per year is available towards counselling costs. 

To apply for the counselling discretionary one-off payment, the applicant must be one of the following:

  • An infected beneficiary registered with the England Infected Blood Support Scheme (EIBSS). 
  • A bereaved beneficiary registered with EIBSS. 
  • Family members of an infected beneficiary registered with EIBSS or previous schemes.

To apply for counselling you need to download and complete a counselling discretionary payment application form (PDF: 167KB)

Employment Training

A discretionary payment towards employment training costs is available for bereaved partners once per year. To apply for this payment, you need to download and complete an employment training discretionary one-off payment application form (PDF: 177KB).

Income top-up payments

This payment is a discretionary monthly payment to increase your household income to help with general living costs. An assessment is made of your household income and if the income is below set thresholds an application can be made to receive payments.

Who can apply

To be eligible to apply for an income top-up payment, the applicant must be registered with EIBSS as a bereaved spouse, civil or long-term partner who lived with an infected beneficiary. 

How to apply

To make a claim you need to download and complete an income top-up payments and child payments application form (PDF: 259KB).

Alternatively, we can post an application form to you. To request this, contact us.

How it is assessed 

Income top-up payments are means-tested assessments and based on household income. The household income is calculated using all income received by the household, including earnings and benefits.

Bereaved beneficiaries would need to qualify for an income top-up under the threshold of £28,401.

 As part of this assessment we will check that you are receiving all of the help you are entitled to through benefits, tax credits or other sources of means-tested support.

We can help you to claim these benefits. If you are entitled to benefits, or other financial support, but do not claim this will be taken into account when calculating your household’s income.

Applicants will receive monthly top-up payments and the amount received will depend on the applicant’s status and the outcome of the assessment.

Details of income used for this assessment, and the amount that applicants may be eligible for, can be found in the Income top-up and Child Payment Support leaflet (PDF: 109KB).

These payments are reviewed on a yearly basis, but let us know if your circumstances change at any time.

 Assessment and verification of household income

Each applicant will be asked to submit a signed declaration of their household’s income.

This should be supported by either 3 months’ worth of bank statements or a combination of:

  • a statement from the person or company that pays the money
  • a court order
  • payslips
  • a full bank statement showing the amount and how often it is paid
  • your annual council tax statement for 2020 to 2021
  • a full benefit award statement (if applicable)
  • a full Housing Benefit award statement (if applicable)

Some income and allowances may include disability benefits and disability related elements. We will need a copy of the full Award Statement breakdown to correctly exclude any disability related elements from the household income.

Child payments

These means-tested payments are to help with the costs of bringing up children of an infected beneficiary.

Dependants are children of an infected beneficiary up to the age of 18 years, or up to 21 if in full-time education.

These payments are available to the primary care provider of the child or children. 

Infected beneficiaries may qualify for a child supplement by completing an income top-up and child supplement form and be assessed as having a household income under £37,900.

Bereaved beneficiaries would need to qualify for an income top-up under the threshold of £28,401.

If you are the primary care provider of a child or children of an infected beneficiary but not a beneficiary yourself, you may still be entitled to apply for support for the child or children for whom you are caring. This will be means-tested in the same way as for income top ups for bereaved spouses and partners.

Who can apply

To be eligible to apply for a payment for children, the applicant needs to be registered with EIBSS. Everyone registered with EIBSS holds a unique reference number and will be in one of the following groups:

  • someone historically infected with HIV and/or hepatitis C from NHS blood or blood products,
  • a bereaved spouse, civil or long-term partner who lived with an infected beneficiary,
  • primary care providers of an infected beneficiary’s biological child or children.

How to apply

To make a claim, you need to download and complete an EIBSS child payments application form (PDF: 263KB).

Alternatively, we can post an application form to you. To request this, contact us.

Details of income used for this assessment, and the amount that applicants may be eligible for, can be found in the Income top-up and Child Payment Support leaflet (PDF: 109KB).

Winter Fuel payments 

If you have applied for any of the above payments, you will automatically receive a winter fuel payment every December.

If you don’t apply for any of the payments above, please contact us as you may still be eligible for the winter fuel payment.

Financial and Benefits Advice

There is a range of financial and benefits advice available for partners and families of a deceased beneficiary.