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Monday, 27 September 2010

Carer's Allowance

Carer's Allowance is a benefit to help people who look after someone who is disabled. You don't have to be related to, or live with, the person you care for.

The information in this section is a guide only. The Carer's Allowance Unit - who will handle your claim - can answer any questions you may have about claiming and getting Carer's Allowance.

Who can get Carer's Allowance?

You can get Carer's Allowance if you're aged 16 or over and spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone.

They should be getting one of the following:

  • Attendance Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance (at the middle or highest rate for personal care)
  • Constant Attendance Allowance (at or above the normal maximum rate with an Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit, or basic (full day) rate with a War Disablement Pension)

Who can't get Carer's Allowance?

You can't get Carer's Allowance if you're  in full-time education with 21 hours or more a week of supervised study, or earn more than £100 a week after certain deductions (for example Income Tax) have been made.

How much do you get?

The weekly rate is £53.90. This is reduced by the amount of certain other benefits, including State Pension, that you get

If you receive certain other benefits at £53.90 or more a week, you won't get Carer's Allowance as well.

You may be able to get an additional amount for your husband, wife, civil partner or someone living with you who looks after your dependent children.

How it's paid

Carer's Allowance is paid directly into any account of your choice that accepts Direct Payment of benefits. This might be a bank, building society, Post Office® or National Savings account.

You may be able to get someone else to collect your Carer's Allowance if you wish. For help with this contact your bank, building society or other account provider for example a credit union.

If you would like more information about how you can be paid by other means contact the Carer's Allowance Unit - details are in the 'How to claim' section.

Effect on other benefits and entitlements

Getting Carer's Allowance may affect any other benefits, allowances, pensions and entitlements you, or the person you care for, receive.

How to claim

You can request a claim form over the phone by contacting the Carer's Allowance Unit or your local benefits office.

Or you can claim online, below.

Changes in circumstances - for you or the person you care for

Changes to your circumstances - and those of the person you care for - can affect your eligibility for Carer's Allowance, or the amount you get.

For example, changes to your income or employment, if you go into full-time education or take a break from caring.

What else you should know

If you receive Carer's Allowance and move to another country in the European Economic Area or Switzerland, you may continue to receive it under certain circumstances. Follow the link below to find out more.

If you are already living in another European Economic Area country or Switzerland, you may be able to claim Disability Living Allowance (care component only) under certain circumstances. Follow the link below to find out more.

Carer's Allowance - British Sign Language and subtitled film

A short film about Carer's Allowance - which is presented in British Sign Language, narrated and also subtitled - can be downloaded from Directgov. You can also view three films about disability benefits, including Disability Living Allowance. The information is also available on DVD, which you can request to be delivered to you.

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