Disability Grant

A disability grant is a social grant intended to provide for the basic needs of adults (people who are over 18 years) who are unfit to work due to a mental or physical disability. The applicant should not have refused to do work that they are capable of doing and should not have refused treatment. The disability must be confirmed by a valid medical report of a medical officer stating whether the disability is temporary or permanent.

Proof of disability

When an application is made for a disability grant, the SASSA officer will give the person a medical form to be completed by either a medical officer or an assessment panel. The medical person must write on the form what kind of disability it is and how long they think it will last.

The assessment by an assessment panel will take place if there is no doctor available. The panel will consist of medical people such as nurses, psychologists and social workers as well as community leaders such as chief magistrates or priests.
The SASSA officer sends the doctor’s certificate in with the application form. The medical officers in SASSA look at the medical certificate or assessment and see if they agree that you are disabled. If they do not agree, they turn the application down.
A person can apply for a temporary disability grant where it is believed the disability will last between six months and a year, OR a permanent disability grant where it is believed the disability will last for more than a year.
The medical certificate for a grant may not be older than 3 months at the date of application.
In order to apply for a Disability Grant the applicant must:

  • be a South African citizen, or a permanent resident or refugee
  • be resident in South Africa at the time of the application
  • be between the ages of 18 years and 60 years
  • be unfit and unable to work because of the nature of your disability
  • if married, your spouse must comply with the means test
  • have a valid identity document or produce alternative identification

A person can still apply if you are in an institution which is partially funded by the state, and may then receive a partial grant.

You cannot apply for a Disability Grant in the following cases:
If the person is living or being taken care of by any of the following institutions which are wholly funded by the state:

  • prison
  • old age home and state treatment centre
  • psychiatric hospital
  • drug rehabilitation centre

If they have refused to undergo medical treatment;
If they are receiving another grant (unless it is a Grant-in-Aid).
Applicants for a grant must have proof of the following before applying for a grant:

  • South African bar-coded identity document (to prove identity, citizenship and age)
  • If you are under 60 years bring a medical assessment or report stating that you are disabled and cannot work
  • If you are single, an affidavit stating this fact
  • Marriage certificate, if you are married
  • Divorce papers if you are divorced
  • An affidavit if your spouse has deserted you for more than 3 consecutive months
  • Death certificate, if your husband or wife died
  • If you are employed, a wage certificate
  • If you are unemployed, any UIF record of registration, discharge certificate from your previous employer and affidavit made at a police station to state you are unemployed
  • If you have a private pension, proof of the pension
  • If you have a bank account, bring a bank statement of three consecutive months
  • Proof of any other income and assets
  • If your partner died within the last 5 years, a copy of the will and the first and final liquidation and distribution accounts

*Information obtained courtesy – Black Sash