Carer’s Allowance alert: People needing care could see vital benefits stopped due to claim
Ed Davey presses Boris Johnson on Carer's Allowance
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Carer’s Allowance provides for unpaid carers that meet certain criteria in their caring work. However, claiming this benefit could see a carer’s patient losing their own benefits, so there are several things to take into account before applying.
Carer’s Allowance provides £3,515 per year for unpaid carers that meet the eligibility criteria.
However, the benefit comes with a few terms and conditions applicants need to be sure of before claiming.
This includes the fact that if a person has multiple carers, only one carer can receive the benefit and carers will not be paid a penny more if they have multiple patients.
Additionally, if a carer has another income stream above the £12,570 personal allowance they will pay tax on their Carer’s Allowance payments as well.
Carer’s Allowance does supply a range of other benefits aside from the payments, including:
- National Insurance credits
- Support from their local council
- Council Tax Reduction
- Universal Credit
- Pension Credit
- Grant or bursaries to help pay for courses or training
- Income Support
- Income-based Employment and Support Allowance.
One of the more overlooked aspects of Carer’s Allowance is the fact that it could affect other benefits that either the carer or their patient receives.
When claiming Carer’s Allowance, the person being cared for will stop receiving the following benefits:
- Severe disability premium
- Added severe disability paid with Pension Credit
- Council Tax Reduction.
The carer themselves will see their benefits also affected although this will generally mean it will increase or stay the same.
Carers receiving Working Tax Credit or Child Tax Credit will need to contact HMRC if they are claiming Carer’s Allowance.
Carers that receive Pension Credit will get their payments increased.
Those that have delayed their state pension could see these payments greatly increased when they do decide to claim it.
To be eligible for Carer’s Allowance there are criteria for both the carer and the patient.
The patient must be receiving one of the following benefits:
- Personal Independence Payment – Daily living component
- Disability Living Allowance
- Attendance Allowance
- Constant Attendance Allowance with an Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
- Constant Attendance Allowance with a War Disablement Pension
- Armed Forces Independence Payment
- Child Disability Payment.
The carer should be providing at least 35 hours of care per week which can include helping with washing, cooking, household tasks or taking the patient to a doctor’s appointment.
All of the following must also apply to the carer in order for them to claim:
- Aged 16 or over
- Spend a minimum of 35 hours per week caring for someone
- Have lived in England, Scotland or Wales for at least two of the last three years
- Normally live in England, Scotland or Wales
- Not be in full-time education
- Not studying for more than 21 hours per week
- Not be subject to immigration control
- Earn less than £128 per week after tax, National Insurance and expenses.
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