Access To Work & Reasonable Adjustments

Employers’ Responsibilities To Make Reasonable Adjustments

Employers must make reasonable adjustments to make sure workers with disabilities, or physical or mental health conditions, aren’t substantially disadvantaged when doing their jobs. This applies to all workers, including trainees, apprentices, contract workers and business partners.

For more information on the sort of things that are included in reasonable adjustments, see: www.gov.uk/reasonable-adjustments-for-disabled-workers

Access To Work 

If you have a disability, health, or mental health condition, and the help you need at work isn't covered by your employer making reasonable adjustments, you may be able to get help from Access to Work. Support is based on your needs and may include a grant to help cover the costs of practical support in the workplace.

You need to have a paid job, or be about to start or return to one; a paid job could include self-employment, an apprenticeship, work trial / experience or internship.

Eligibility criteria apply and how much you get will depend on your circumstances. The money doesn’t have to be paid back and it doesn’t affect your other benefits, (though certain benefits may affect whether you can get an Access to Work grant). Access to Work grants are given for items and services such as:

  • adaptations to the equipment you use
  • special equipment or software
  • taxi fares to work if you can’t use public transport
  • adaptations to your vehicle so you can get to work
  • a support worker or job coach to help you in your workplace
  • confidential support and advice from a trained healthcare professional from the Mental Health Support Service
  • disability awareness training for your colleagues
  • the cost of moving your equipment if you change location or job

England, Scotland and Wales all offer the Access to Work scheme.

For more information visit: www.gov.uk/access-to-work or speak to the Disability Employment Adviser (DEA) or work coach at your local JobCentre Plus, or phone Access to Work on 0345 268 8489.

Employers can also gain guidance about employing disabled people: www.gov.uk/government/collections/disability-confident-campaign 
and advice from Access to Work: 
www.gov.uk/government/publications/access-to-work-guide-for-employers    

Northern Ireland have their own Access to Work (NI) scheme: www.nidirect.gov.uk/articles/access-work-practical-help-work    

Disability Rights UK have a factsheet on Access to Work: 
www.disabilityrightsuk.org/access-work

Page last updated: July 2019