The good news is that because you are classed as a carer, you are not expected to look for work, and therefore don’t have to be on Jobseeker's Allowance. In fact it is quite hard to get Jobseeker's Allowance if you’ve been awarded Carer’s Allowance, as caring for someone for 35 hours a week doesn’t fit with being available for and actively seeking work!
Now let’s look at each of the possible benefits…
- You have the right to claim Income Support as a carer
- However, you will still not be entitled to Income Support if you are actually working 16 hours or more per week (but this doesn’t apply to you!)
- The amount you get will be reduced if you have other income (although some income is ignored, including the things further down this page) or if you have too much savings or other capital
- Crucially, the Carer’s Allowance itself is counted as income
- The maximum amount you can get each week if you have no other income will usually be £107.70, or £92.50 if you are under 25. However you are unlikely to get this much Income Support in reality as you will also be getting £62.70 Carer’s Allowance, which would reduce your Income Support to £45.00, or £29.80 if you are under 25. These figures may be higher if you are disabled yourself.
- You might ask why you should bother getting the Carer’s Allowance if it’s going to be taken off your Income Support, but don’t forget that you wouldn’t be getting the Carer’s Allowance at all if you were not entitled to Carer’s Allowance! It’s also worth noting that the combination of your Carer’s Allowance and Income Support is still £34.60 more than what you would be getting on Jobseeker's Allowance.
- You can claim Income Support by phoning the Jobcentre Plus on 0800 055 6688.
you are currently getting income based Employment and Support
Allowance because you are unfit for work yourself think twice
before ending this and claiming Income Support. This is because
you are likely to be entitled to more Employment and Support
Allowance than Income Support (this could be £0.00*, £29.05, £36.20, or
even £51.95, depending on circumstances). You should still tell
the Jobcentre Plus that you are now getting Carer’s Allowance,
though, firstly because you are obliged to tell them about any
changes and secondly because getting Carer’s Allowance entitles
you to an additional increase of £34.60 in your income based
Employment and Support Allowance (this last increase would be
included in your Income Support calculation too, but you would
lose the other additions).
*You will not get more ESA if you have been placed in the 'work-related activity group' and your claim for ESA started after 3rd April 2017
- If you rent your home, getting Income Support should entitle you to full Housing Benefit as well. Bear in mind, though, being entitled to full Housing Benefit is not the same as getting all your rent paid.
- If you want more information about Housing Benefit, click here
|If you were getting Housing Benefit before for some other reason (for example, getting Jobseeker's Allowance, or working and being on low income) you should tell the local authority (council) that your circumstances have changed, otherwise you will be getting Housing Benefit for the wrong reason, and may end up being asked to pay back an overpayment|
Council Tax Support
- If you rent your home, getting Income Support should entitle you to full Council Tax Support as well.
- Bear in mind, though, being entitled to full Council Tax Support is not the same as getting all your council tax paid.
- Depending on your local authority (council) you might find that you are entitled to more Council Tax Support than you were before.
- If you want more information about Council Tax Support, click here.
|If you were getting Council Tax Support before for some other reason (for example, getting Jobseeker's Allowance, or working and being on low income) you should tell the local authority (council) that your circumstances have changed, otherwise you will be getting Council Tax Support for the wrong reason, and may end up being asked to pay back an overpayment|