Becoming an Appointee for Benefits

If the person you are caring for is eligible for benefits but does not have the capacity to manage these themselves, you can apply for the right to deal with these on their behalf. Being an appointee can be beneficial as it gives you the right to act in relation to their benefits, ensuring that they get what they are entitled to and that their payments are spent on the things they really need. 

Who can be an appointee?

An individual can only have one appointee. The appointee can be someone who knows them such as a relative or friend or an organisation or representative of an organisation, for example a solicitor or local council. 

What would my responsibilities be?

As an appointee you’re responsible for making and maintaining any benefit claims. You must: 

  • sign the benefit claim form 
  • tell the benefit office about any changes which affect how much the claimant gets 
  • spend the benefit (which is paid directly to you) in the claimant’s best interests 
  • tell the benefit office if you stop being the appointee, for example the claimant can now manage their own affairs 

How do I become an appointee?

To become an appointee, you should contact the relevant organisation depending on the benefit:  

After this, the DWP will: 

  • Arrange to visit you to assess if an appointee is needed. 
  • Interview you to make sure you’re a suitable appointee. During the interview, you and the interviewer fill out an appointee application form (Form BF56) 
  • If the DWP agrees with the application you’ll be sent Form BF57 (confirming you’ve been formally appointed to act for the claimant). You won’t be the appointee until this happens. 

How do I stop being an appointee?

If you want to voluntarily stop being an appointee, you should contact the Department of Work and Pensions as soon as you can. You can do this either by phone or in writing, using the contact details provided on any correspondence you have received. They will stop paying the benefits to you and send you a form called a BF58, to confirm that you have ended your appointment. 

If the claimant still has a need for an appointee, even though you are unable to fulfil the role yourself anymore, then you can nominate another person or organisation to take it on in your place. The DWP will then assess the suitability of the new potential appointee. If you do not know who else to nominate, the DWP will contact social services at the Local Authority to request they become the appointee instead. 

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