Applying for DLA for an autistic child

DLA forms

So you are thinking about or need to apply for Disability Living Allowance (DLA).  It is a mammoth form and a very daunting task, no one wants to list out everything that their child struggles with on a government form.

When my son was first diagnosed as autistic we were told to apply for DLA, if I’m honest I was very uncomfortable with this.  Why was I uncomfortable? Well I thought I was doing that same as most parents with young children and although some things are difficult to manage, your average toddler is particularly difficult at times.  I now realise that this benefit is there to support people with additional needs.

In this post I will provide some information about DLA, including some advice in relation to completing the form for a child with autism and some general tips for completing the form.

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The Common Assessment Framework (CAF)


What is a Common Assessment Framework / CAF?

The Common Assessment Framework (CAF), it is a standardised document / assessment that is used across various agencies to identify a young child’s needs and plan a co-ordinated approach to meet those needs.

A CAF is usually used when a child requires additional support.  It can be driven by the parent or anyone working with the child, in our case it was suggested by our health visitor, she also completed the assessment and form.

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ADOS & Social Communication Assessment Report

I didn’t know what to expect when we went to my boy’s ADOS test.  We had waited a long time to see the ‘social communication expert’ in our local area.  So I thought it might be helpful to share our experience of ADOS for those about to have an assessment. Don’t worry there is no need to prepare for ADOS but its always nice to understand what its all about.

What is ADOS?

ADOS – Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule

ADOS is a semi-structured assessment looking at social interaction, communication and play for individuals suspected of having an autism.

It is used as an assessment to assist with diagnosing autism.  Getting an autism diagnosis is different for each person but ADOS is a common tool used for diagnosing young children.  In our case it was used alongside a social communication assessment; this was just one step towards my son’s diagnosis. Continue reading “ADOS & Social Communication Assessment Report”