Income Support rules for carers

Income Support rules for carers

Can I claim Income Support as a carer?

You are eligible to claim Income Support as a carer if any of the following apply:

  • You are looking after your partner or a child or qualifying young person who is 'temporarily ill' and for whom you are responsible.
  • You are regularly and substantially engage in caring for another person and either you are getting carers allowance, or the person you are caring for gets Attendance Allowance (AA) or constant attendance allowance, or the middle or highest rate of disability living allowance (DLA) care component or Personal Independance Payments (PIP) Daily Living Component at either Standard or enhanced rate.
    If the person you are looking after has claimed DLA,PIP or AA, you'll be eligible for up to 26 weeks while you are waiting for their claim to be processed. You are eligible if they have an advance award of DLA middle or highest rate care component, PIP Daily Living Component at either Standard or enhanced rate or AA but are still in the qualifying period. If carer's allowance entitlement stops, or the person you are looking after stops getting AA or the middle or highest rate of DLA care component, you continue to be eligible for eight weeks.
  • If you would have been eligible for Income Support (IS)as a carer had you made a claim for IS, then you are eligible for IS for eight weeks from the date your carer's allowance and/or the disabled person's qualifying benefit stops.

How much will I get?

If you are eligible to claim Income Support as a carer, when calculating your entitlement, a carers premium will be included in your Applicable Amount (the amount the law says that you need to live on).
You or you partner must be entitled to carer's allowance, even if you are not actually paid it because you receive another benefit. This premium is payable for each person who qualifies.

Working and Caring?

If you are eligible to Income Support because you are caring for a person and fit the criteria above, you are not excluded from Income Support even if you have another job.
For example, if you care for someone during the day, and you work 20 hours a week in the evenings, because you are a carer none of your hours count as being in remunerative work, and therefore the occupation does not count towards the 16-hour or 24-hour work limit. 

Although your hours will not affect your eligibility for Income Support, any income you earn over £20 will be taken into account when working out how much Income Support you may be entitled to. 

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