From summer 2018, carers in Scotland who receive Carers’ Allowance from the DWP will receive a top-up benefit (backdated to April 2018) twice a year from the Scottish Government.
This will increase the value of their award to the same level as Jobseeker’s Allowance (increasing from £62.70 to £73.10 per week) and is an interim measure prior to the Scottish Government taking complete control of Carers Allowance itself at a later date. Read our update on when payments will start here.
Who is eligible for Carers Allowance?
You may get Carers Allowance if you:
- Are 16 or over
- Spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone
- Have been in Great Britain for at least 2 of last 3 years and
- The person you care must get one of the qualifying disability benefits which include: Attendance Allowance; Disability Living Allowance (middle or highest care rate) and Personal Independence Payment (daily living component).
You may not get Carers Allowance if you’re in full-time education, studying for 21 hours or more a week or if you earn more than £120 a week (after tax). If you can’t be paid Carer’s Allowance due to the ‘overlapping benefit rule’, you may get:
- The carer premiums for Jobseeker’s Allowance or Income Support
- Extra Pension Credit or
- The carer element in Universal Credit.
Applying for Carers Allowance
You can apply for Carers Allowance online – click here to be taken to the Gov.uk website.
If you need support to apply for Carers Allowance or advice on benefits and other financial matters, please book an appointment at one of VOCAL’s free Money Matters surgeries.
Not sure if you are eligible? Watch our video below where carer support worker Shirley explains that many carers underestimate the number of hours support they provide for the person they care for, and therefore miss out on claiming it. Or you can book a ‘benefits check’ at our free Money Matters surgeries.