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Carer's allowance is the main welfare benefit to help carers and is worth £62.70 per week (April 2017-18). You'll also get National Insurance credits each week towards your pension if you're under pension age. You don't have to be related to or live with the person you care for to claim Carer's Allowance, and you might still be able to claim even if you don't think of yourself as a carer.

On this page you’ll find out the following:

Am I eligible to claim Carer's Allowance?

Caring can be rewarding but it can also be tiring and stressful, and if you give up work to be a carer it can also have an impact on your finances. Even if you don’t think of yourself as a carer, Carer’s Allowance could help you.

You could be eligible if you:

  • Spend at least 35 hours a week caring for a disabled person (you don't have to live with them or be related to them)
  • Care for someone who receives the higher-rate or middle-rate care component of Disability Living Allowance, either rate of Personal Independence Payment daily living component, or any rate of Attendance Allowance
  • Do not earn more than £116 a week (after deductions)
  • Are not in full-time education.

What happens if I have savings?

If you think you won’t be eligible to claim Carer’s Allowance because you have some savings, don’t worry. Your savings and your National Insurance record won’t make a difference to your claim.

How is my claim affected by other benefits or payments?

If you get the State Pension you won’t be paid Carer’s Allowance. But don’t be put off making a claim, because if you’re eligible then you could be awarded extra Pension Credit or Housing Benefit instead.

If you’re claiming Universal Credit, you may be able to get an extra amount because of your caring role without applying for Carer's Allowance. This is known as a carer element. Find out more about Universal Credit.

How do I claim Carer's Allowance?

Step 1

Call the Carer's Allowance Unit on 0345 608 4321 (textphone: 0345 604 5312) or visit GOV.UK to download a claim form or make a claim online.

Your options for beginning a claim for Carer's Allowance

Step 2

If you need help completing the form, ask your local Age UK if they can help you.

Speak to your local Age UK for help with your Carer's Allowance forms

Step 3

After you submit your claim, you’ll receive a decision in writing that will tell you if you have been awarded Carer’s Allowance and from what date.

Step 4

If you get turned down, read our information on challenging a benefits decision.

Step 5

If your circumstances change, e.g. if you take a break from caring, stop being a carer altogether or the person you care for goes into hospital, make sure you let the Carer’s Allowance Unit know.

For more information: Call Age UK Advice: 0800 169 2081

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