Do you care?

By ‘care’ I mean personally look after a person who receives one of these qualifying allowances:

  • Attendance Allowance
  • Constant Attendance Allowance (at or above normal maximum rate with an industrial injuries disablement benefit)
  • Disability Living Allowance (the care component at the middle or highest rate)
  • Personal Independence Payment (the daily living component)
  • Armed forces Independence Payment
  • Child Disability Payment (middle or highest care rate)
  • Adult Disability Payment (daily living component)

If you do, and you spend at least 35 hours per week caring for them, you may be entitled to claim Carer’s allowance of up to £69.70 per week. You would need to be 16 or over, not in full time education and not earning more than £132 per week from employment or self-employment after deductions. You do not need to be related to or live with the person you care for, but you should tell them if you want to apply for Carer’s Allowance as if might affect other benefits that they (or you) get.

Even if you’re not eligible for Carer’s Allowance, if you care for someone for at least 20 hours per week, you might be able to get Carer’s Credits, (these help to fill in gaps in your National Insurance Record).

In these financially difficult times, it is worth checking out your eligibility for any benefits to which you might be entitled, and Citizens Advice can help you with this. If the person you are caring for is not yet claiming one of the qualifying allowances, but might be eligible, we can help them to apply too if they want to do so.

This is how we helped Nicky*

Nicky’s husband had been badly injured in a car crash and we had been helping him to apply for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) which had just been approved. The young couple had three children, and neither were now working. Nicky was caring for her husband as well as looking after the children and was finding it difficult to cope financially. She wondered if there was anything else that they might be able to claim but was worried that her husband might lose the PIP if they claimed any other new benefits.

The adviser said that she may be eligible for Carer’s Allowance and that if she was, the PIP would not be affected, but it could affect the other benefits that she or the person she was caring for were getting, so he would need to do a careful benefit check for Nicky and her husband.

Nicky was pleased to hear that she might now be able to contribute to the family income.

*Not her real name

If you ‘CARE’ please contact us to see if we can help you, or the person you care for to maximise your incomes.

Citizens Advice Waverley contact details:

Leave online message

Tel 0808 278 7980 (freephone) to speak to an adviser

Self help – search our national site by topic

Visit us (office opening details)

South West Surrey Domestic Abuse Outreach Service contact details: 

Tel 01483 898884, Email

Visit our website

Citizens Advice Mole Valley contact details:

Both Dorking and Leatherhead Citizens Advice offices are currently open for appointments, please either telephone our adviceline 0800 144 8848 or email /

Contact East Surrey Domestic Abuse Services on 01737 771350 or email:

Surrey Domestic Abuse 9am-9pm Helpline – 01483 776822

In an emergency always dial 999

Citizens Advice Reigate and Banstead contact details:

Phone Adviceline: 0808 278 7945 (free) to speak to an adviser (Monday – Friday 9.00 – 16.00)

Email: Use an enquiry form

Self help (website)

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