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Benefits for carers

Carers Allowance:

The main state benefit that carers can apply for is Carers Allowance - this is the only benefit specifically for carers, however not all carers will qualify for this benefit.

You don’t have to be living with the person you care for or related to them but there are some conditions attached to this benefit, including:

  • You must be spending at least 35 hours a week caring for the person.
  • The person you care for must be receiving one of the following:
    • Disability Living Allowance (DLA) at middle or highest rate of the care component
    • Attendance Allowance (AA), any rate
    • Personal Independence Payment (PIP) any rate of the daily living component
    • Constant Attendance Allowance at or above the normal maximum rate with an Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit.
    • Constant Attendance Allowance at the basic rate with War Disablement Pension.
  • You must be aged 16 or over.
  • You must be earning less than £115 a week (though some income may not be counted).
  • You must not be in full-time education or studying for 21 hours a week or more.
  • Have been in Scotland/England/Wales for at least 2 of the last 3 years.
  • You normally live in Scotland/England/Wales or you live abroad as a member of the armed forces.
  • Not subject to immigration control.

How much is Carers Allowance?

At the moment Carers Allowance is £62.70 a week. However before making a claim, always check with the person you are caring for as your claim may affect any means-tested benefits they are receiving.

For more information on Carers Allowance and to find out if you may be entitled to this please contact the Welfare Rights Team on welfarerights@pkc.gov.uk or call them on 01738 476900 (Option 1).

Please  note: the Carers Allowance DS700 forms and notes have been updated with new versions. Please ensure you are using the correct forms when making a claim if you are unable to complete the form online. The link below will take you to the correct forms.

Carers Allowance Forms and Notes


Personal Independence Payment (PIP):

Please note, that Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is replacing Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for people with a long-term health condition or disability aged 16 to 64. 

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is money for people who have extra care needs or mobility needs (difficulty getting around) as a result of a disability.

There are two parts called components, the daily living component and the mobility component. You may qualify for one or both of them.

  • You must be 16 or over but under 65 when you first claim
  • If you have a child with an illness, injury or disability see Disability Living Allowance for children. If you are 65 or over, see Attendance Allowance.
  • Non-means tested benefit & not taxable

For more information about PIP please visit - www.pkc.gov.uk/pip


Disability Living Allowance (for children) (DLA):

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children may help with the extra costs of looking after a child who:

  • is under 16
  • has difficulties walking or needs much more looking after than a child of the same age who doesn’t have a disability

They will need to meet all the eligibility requirements.

The DLA rate is between £22 and £141.10 a week and depends on the level of help the child needs.

It is tax-free and is disregarded as an income for means-tested benefits. If awarded, you can get an increase in Child Tax Credit. 

For more information about DLA please visit - www.gov.uk/disability-living-allowance-children


Attendance Allowance (AA):

Attendance Allowance is money for people aged 65 or over who have care needs. You may have care needs if you need help with activities of daily living such as getting dressed, going to the toilet or having someone to look after your so you do not hurt yourself. 

  • Attendance Allowance is not means tested, is tax free and is not affected by any income or savings you have.
  • It is paid over and above whatever income you already have and can often increase your entitlement to any means tested benefits you may be entitled to.    
  • You do not have to have someone looking after you to qualify as long as you can show that the help you need is reasonably required. 
  • Attendance Allowance is normally paid to the disabled person however if someone provides you with care, they may be able to claim Carer's Allowance for looking after you.   
  • You have to wait 6 months from when your care needs began before you can get Attendance Allowance unless you are terminally ill and satisfy special rules. If  this is the case, Attendance Allowance can be paid straight away at the higher rate.  
  • If you are under 65 years and have care needs or mobility problems, you will not be able to get Attendance Allowance but may be able to claim  Personal Independence Payment (PIP) instead. 

Attendance Allowance is payable at two rates as follows:

Lower Rate - If you have day time needs only OR if you have night time needs only then you could get the lower rate of Attendance Allowance. This is £55.65 per week from April 2017.  

Higher Rate - If you have both day time AND  night time needs or satisfy the special rules, you could get the higher rate of Attendance Allowance. This is £83.10 per week from April 2017.  

For more information about Attendance Allowance please visit - www.pkc.gov.uk/aa 


Carers Credit:

Carer's Credits mean carers can be ‘credited’ with Class 3 national insurance contributions to help them qualify for other benefits which they may not otherwise have been eligible for if their caring responsibilities prevented them from being able to work and pay national insurance contributions in the normal way.

Applies to: England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales

Age rules: You must be 16 or over but under state pension age

Apply for Carer's Credit through: Department for Work and Pensions

For more information on Carers Credit please visit - www.gov.uk/carers-credit 

For further information and advice on any of the above benefits please email welfarerights@pkc.gov.uk or call them on 01738 476900 (Option 1)

Last Modified: 05 April 2018

This is only a small breakdown of information in relation to benefits for carers, it can be a complex and confusing process.

Useful Contacts:

Perth & Kinross Welfare Rights Team

Email: welfarerights@pkc.gov.uk

Tel: 01738 476900 (Option 1)

Web: www.pkc.gov.uk/welfarerights

Address: Pullar House, 35 Kinnoull Street, Perth, PH1 5GD


Turn2Us

They are a national charity that have a very thorough A-Z Benefit Guide on their website. You can also print off information about each benefit.

Please visit - www.turn2us.org.uk/Your-Situation and click on the A-Z of Benefits. 

Click here to make a referral to PKAVS Carers Hub

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