ILF Scotland

Re-Opening ILF Frequently Asked Questions

Since the First Minister announced the re-opening of the Independent Living Fund, you may have questions about what happens next.

As we move towards the fund being re-opened, we will add more questions and answers. If your question if not answered on this page, please send your question to communications@ilf.scot.

We have split our Re-Opening ILF Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) into sections so you can find the answers to your questions quickly and easily.

Click on any of the below headings to be taken to questions on that subject.

The Re-Opened Fund

When will the Independent Living Fund be re-opened?

Spring, 2024


Who will be eligible for the re-opened Independent Living Fund?

Before the fund is re-opened, the details of who will be eligible, how people can apply and all the policies underpinning the fund, will have to be decided. A Co-Production Working Group with members from ILF Scotland, statutory bodies, Disabled People's Organisations (DPOs), local authorities and the Scottish Government are overseeing the process of re-opening. They have organised a series of Co-Production Events so that disabled people, DPOs and other interested stakeholders can have their say on things such as eligibility. Find an event near you to have your say.


How do I apply for the re-opened Independent Living Fund?

Once the details of the re-opened fund have been agreed, we will share the process of how to apply.


Does this replace the current '2015' Fund? / I'm a current recipient - will I need to reapply?

No. Those who currently receive ILF funding will continue to do so. This is a re-opening of the current fund and it isn't a replacement.


Is the Independent Living Fund re-opening in Northern Ireland?

At this time, only the Scottish Government have committed to re-opening the Independent Living Fund in Scotland.


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Co-Production Events

What are the co-production events?

The Co-Production Events are being held in person and online to give people an opportunity to help shape the re-opening of the Independent Living Fund.


What does co-production mean?

The TLAP National Co-production Advisory Group says the following about co-production:

"Co-production is not just a word, it is not just a concept, it is a meeting of minds coming together to find shared solutions. In practice, co-production involves people who use services being consulted, included and working together from the start to the end of any project that affects them. When co-production works best, people who use services and carers are valued by organisations as equal partners, can share power and have influence over decisions made."

For ILF Scotland, co-production means that the people who will be receiving the re-opened Independent Living Fund, the disabled people of Scotland, have a say in how it's developed, run and distributed.


Are the co-production events accessible?

Yes. We aim to make all our events as accessible as possible. All the venues we choose will have gone through an extensive Accessibility Checklist to ensure they are fit for purpose. However, if there is something you particularly require in able to attend an event, please contact us on 0300 200 2022 or email enquiries@ilf.scot.


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General Questions

If we ask for too much flexibility in what funding can be used for, is there a danger ministers will re-evaluate the decision to reopen the fund on the basis it might cost more than they thought? Or do they still have to do it?

Flexibility is not the issue – ministers will support as much flexibility as possible to ensure people get the best out of the fund, but there are obviously constraints. The risk is that if costs spiral beyond what is affordable for government – it could close the fund. We have committed to working with disabled people to make sure the fund is sustainable.

We can’t spend more than £9million in first year. This is actually a significant challenge because it takes time for applications to be made and for assessors to go out and meet people in order to be able to agree the awards, so getting the £9million to disabled people within the first 12 months is a big challenge.

ILF Scotland’s role is to stay within budget to safeguard that money for disabled people while operating within the limits the Scottish Government has set. We want as many disabled people getting support as possible without compromising the long-term future of the fund. 


Do social work have enough money to meet the minimum funding requirement to qualify to apply for ILF?

ILF Scotland’s job is to try and minimise the burden on Local Authorities. We have no control over LAs and how they use their funding. We talk to Scottish Government all the time about issues impacting disabled people lives. We are speaking to COSLA and other partners on the national co-production working group regularly to make sure we are doing everything we can to make the process as simple as possible, so that Social Work can support applications and make sure the reopening is a success.


How are we thinking about inclusivity, in terms of ethnicity and other characteristics? We will know those who have already been involved with the fund in the past, and we need to do what we can to reach others who have not been involved before.

We monitor where applications are coming from, including sociodemographic information when the 2015 fund initially opened and for the Transition Fund, and where we have seen areas that have been underrepresented (by postcode mainly), we have specifically targeted those groups. This appreciate how important this point is and we will ensure this is included in our thinking.


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Questions and answers

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