Helping with money problems after a Cancer diagnosis

Home News & Events News News Helping with money problems after a Cancer diagnosis

Why were we needed?

Several months after being assured by a GP that the pain in his arm and shoulder was ‘nothing serious’, Matt was given a Cancer diagnosis. At the same time, Matt and his fiance, Amy, became aware that Amy was expecting a baby. They would need help with the resulting financial consequences.

Amy and Matt’s plan to be married and buy their first home was upended by the devastating news of Matt’s diagnosis. Instead, Amy, Matt and Amy’s daughter Scarlett had to embark on a very different and difficult new path.

Matt’s condition prevented him from working and the money he’d saved for a housing deposit had to be spent on cancer care. His diagnosis also made it hard to get a mortgage.

Matt and Amy asked for help with the combined matters of Matt’s diagnosis, their complicated financial situation, and how Amy, Matt’s stepdaughter Scarlett, and the baby would manage once Matt was gone.

Shortly after the couple married, Matt succumbed to cancer, leaving a widow, a daughter, and a tiny baby behind.

How did we help?

Before Covid-19 restrictions, Matt, Amy and Scarlett met with Karen, who runs our specialist team who help people suffering from chronic or life-limiting conditions. Together they worked out a plan for how the family’s finances would change as his condition developed.

Then, we helped Matt to claim all the benefits he could get and gave the family remote support whenever they needed it, throughout lockdowns.

After Matt died, we kept our promise to him and continued to help his family. We were always there to listen and helped Amy move onto benefits in her name, and claim bereavement benefits and a funeral grant.

During this time, Amy applied for Universal Credit. Her anguish was compounded by an online form that did not cater to those who were recently bereaved. The form forced her to identify as ‘single’, rather than ‘widowed’.

We reported this social policy issue to the DWP who are looking into it.

We continue to offer Amy and the children our support in whatever way we can.

Click here to contact our Macmillan Welfare Benefits Team to get help with this and similar life-altering conditions. The team is funded by Macmillan Cancer Support, Dorothy House and Bath MS Society.

What difference did we make?

Facing a cancer diagnosis is an overwhelming challenge in itself, before undergoing chemotherapy or surgery. Add on the frustration of benefits claims, concerns of future finances, and caring for a newborn, and you have a truly worrying situation.

We took away Matt and Amys’ financial worries so they could focus on making the most of the time they had together, and we’re keeping our promise to Matt to help his family now that he’s moved on.

You can visit Macmillan to find out about further support that they provide.

Published in
23 November 2021
Last Updated
23 November 2021