Care: Research shows a quarter of UK adults are carers
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The DWP confirmed in November 2021 that benefit payments will increase by 3.1 percent in April. For Carer’s Allowance, this will raise weekly payments from £67.60 to £69.70.
To claim this support, applicants will need to provide a range of information and documentation to the state.
Claimants will need to have their National Insurance number, banking details, employment details and latest payslip if they’re working, P45 if they’ve recently finished work, course details if they’re studying and details of any expenses at the ready when making a claim.
Additionally, they’ll also need details of the person they’re caring for, including their date of birth, National Insurance number if they’re 16 or over or Disability Living Allowance reference if they’re under 16.
Claims themselves can be backdated by up to three months and they can be made online through the Government’s website.
It is also possible to apply through the post where applicants cannot access the website.
To be eligible for Carer’s Allowance, claimants must care for someone for at least 35 hours a week who themselves get certain benefits such as PIP.
The type of care necessary can vary and includes helping with washing and cooking, taking the person they care for to a doctor’s appointment or helping with household tasks, like managing bills and shopping.
Additionally, claimants must also be aged 16 or over.
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They must have been living in England, Scotland or Wales for at least two of the last three years.
Claimants will not be eligible if they’re in full-time education, studying for 21 hours a week or more or if they’re subject to immigration control.
They also cannot earn more than £128 per week after tax, National Insurance and expenses.
Where applicants are not eligible for Carer’s Allowance, they may be able to apply for Carer’s Credit instead.
It should be noted Carer’s Allowance can have an effect on other benefits the claimant may be receiving.
When a person claims Carer’s Allowance, the person they care for will stop getting a severe disability premium paid with their benefits and an extra amount for severe disability paid with Pension Credit, if they get one.
They may also stop getting reduced Council Tax.
For claimants themselves, their other benefit payments may change but their total benefit payments will usually either go up or stay the same.
Carer’s Allowance does not count towards the benefit cap but for those in receipt of Working Tax Credit or Child Tax Credit, HMRC must be contacted to inform it of their Carer’s Allowance claim.
Additionally, those in receipt of Pension Credit will see their payments rise if they’re eligible for Carer’s Allowance.
To help claimants understand how their benefits will be affected by Carer’s Allowance, free-to-use benefits calculators are available online.
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