Carer’s Allowance is a non-means tested benefit paid to carers who meet the criteria.
After the initial application, claimants do not have to attend any interviews or assessments to keep getting the benefit. If there are no changes to your situation you will continue receiving the benefit. If there are changes to your eligibility then you need to report this to the Carer’s Allowance helpline.
You may be eligible for Carer’s Allowance if you spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone who gets a qualifying disability benefit and meet other criteria (link to gov)
If you’re over pension age, you can still apply but you may not receive any additional money. If you’re over pension age and you’re unsure whether to apply, you could contact the Carers UK helpline for advice on 0808 808 7777 or speak to a Lamplight Assessor.
The person you care for must get one of these benefits before you can be awarded Carer’s Allowance:
If you meet the criteria, you can apply online on the Gov.uk website here.
Carer’s Allowance will not reduce your benefit entitlement. In some cases it will stay the same and in some cases your total benefits income will increase.
In many cases Carer’s Allowance will have no effect on the benefits of the person you support. Carer’s Allowance will never affect the person’s disability benefit. However, if the person you care for gets an extra amount called a ‘severe disability premium’ then this will stop once you claim Carer’s Allowance.
The Carer’s UK website and helpline can explain this in more detail if you want to know more.
Read about contribution-based benefits here to find out more: http://www.entitledto.co.uk/help/contribution-based-benefits.
Carers are often exempt from paying council tax. Ask your local council for a list of their Council Tax Discounts and Exemptions. These exemptions are not related to your income. Exemptions and discounts can be backdated.
Council assessments - help and possible funding
Regardless of whether you get Carer’s Allowance, local councils have a duty under the Care Act 2015 to assess the needs of both carers and those with care needs. Any needs identified should then be supported financially (in some cases) or with other forms of help and support.
In practice, the money and help offered to carers varies depending on the area. The Carers UK website has more information about Carers Assessments and Needs Assessments: http://www.carersuk.org/help-and-advice/practical-support
The Equality Act 2010 is another law that affects carers. The Equality Act has helped to set in place the way businesses should take into account the needs of customers with disabilities, with reasonable adjustments in place that allow accessibility at no extra cost.
For example, if you support someone to go to the cinema or another leisure activity such as the zoo or swimming, you should be entitled to free entry in many cases.
A card for free cinema entry is available here - https://ceacard.co.uk - and in other cases, speak to centre managers or customer services to enquire about free carer entry.
8:30am - 8:30pm, 7 days a week
To speak with someone about the Lamplight service and schedule a telephone appointment:
Lines are open 8:30am - 8:30pm, 7 days a week
Before booking an appointment, look at our advice guides further down the page. You may find the answer to your query there without the need of an appointment.
After you have booked an appointment we need you to complete the pre-appointment questionnaire. This will provide us with the information necessary to give you advice specific to your circumstances. Do not complete the questionnaire before booking an appointment.
At the time of your appointment make sure you are somewhere that you can receive a call and speak in confidence. We will text you a reminder of your appointment before your appointment.
Please cancel your appointment if you can’t make it so someone else can have it. You can cancel by:
To rebook follow the instructions within “how to access the service” detailed above.