Independent Living Fund (ILF) Scotland Information

Following the closure of the UK Independent Living Fund (ILF) on 30 June 2015, the Scottish Government established a new organisation, the Independent Living Fund (ILF) Scotland, to administer payments for existing recipients of ILF in Scotland and in Northern Ireland.

ILF Scotland is a public body, governed by a Board of Directors, appointed by and accountable to Scottish Ministers. ILF Scotland operates as a discretionary fund providing financial awards to more than 2,300 disabled people in Scotland and Northern Ireland to help them live independently.  

The funding recipients receive is used to purchase social care support to help them meet independent living outcomes that are important to them. Recipients are supported in their own homes and within their own communities, and the funding helps overcome barriers they might face to independent living.  Independent living means: “Disabled people have the same freedom, choice, dignity and control as other people at home, at work and in the community. It does not mean living by yourself or looking after yourself on your own. It means the person has rights to practical assistance and support to participate in society and live an ordinary life.” (Independent Living in Scotland Project, 2008). 

Depending on when recipients joined ILF Scotland, the Fund categorises recipients into different groups, which determines the maximum amount that ILF Scotland can pay in annual awards. The Fund makes payments of different amounts for different social care support services on an individual basis as part of the ILF reviews that take place every two to three years, which are person centred and outcomes focused.   

For disabled adults with a self-directed support (SDS) budget, ILF Scotland complements the funding and services in place. ILF Scotland funding is additional to the responsibility of the person’s Local Authority/ Health and Social Care Partnership, and recipients use their ILF Scotland funding to meet additional independent living outcomes. 

Co-production, collaboration with, and involvement of disabled people is at the heart of the organisation and is in every facet of its operations. ILF Scotland works in partnership with recipients to provide relevant information, services and support in a format and method that works for them so that they have full choice and control of their ILF funding. 

ILF Scotland encourages recipients to use their funding flexibly to achieve independent living outcomes in a way that suits their individual needs and helps overcome barriers they might face to independent living. This may be different for each recipient and there can be a variety of different ways to use the funding, such as engaging social care support agencies or employing Personal Assistants. 

Next steps

ILF Scotland provide a range of information and support to enable people receiving ILF funding to recruit and employ their own Personal Assistants (PAs). Further information on the support provided can be found in the resources below.

Part of
Last Updated
20 February 2024
First Published
28 March 2022
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Please note that the information contained in this Handbook is provided for guidance purposes only. Every reasonable effort is made to make the information accurate and up to date, but no responsibility for its accuracy and correctness, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by Self Directed Support Scotland or any other contributing party.

The information does not, and is not intended to, amount to legal advice. You are strongly advised to obtain specific, personal and professional advice from a lawyer about employment law matters, or an accountant/ tax specialist about taxation matters, and from HMRC and your insurers. You should not rely solely on the information in this Handbook. Support organisations listed in this Handbook can help you find appropriate sources of advice.