The person you care for

The person you care for must already get one of these benefits:

  • Personal Independence Payment - daily living component
  • Disability Living Allowance - the middle or highest care rate
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Constant Attendance Allowance at or above the normal maximum rate with an Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
  • Constant Attendance Allowance at the basic (full day) rate with a War Disablement Pension
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment

Your eligibility

All of the following must apply:

  • you’re 16 or over
  • you spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone
  • you’ve been in England, Scotland or Wales for at least 2 of the last 3 years (this does not apply if you’re a refugee or have humanitarian protection status)
  • you normally live in England, Scotland or Wales, or you live abroad as a member of the armed forces (you might still be eligible if you’re moving to or already living in an EEA country or Switzerland)
  • you’re not in full-time education
  • you’re not studying for 21 hours a week or more
  • you’re not subject to immigration control
  • your earnings are £123 or less a week after tax, national insurance and expenses

Calculating your earnings

Your earnings are any income from employment and self-employment after tax, national insurance and expenses.

Expenses can include:

  • 50% of your pension contributions
  • equipment you need to do your job, for example specialist clothing
  • travel costs between different workplaces that are not paid for by your employer, for example fuel or train fares
  • business costs if you’re self-employed, for example a computer you only use for work

If you pay a carer to look after the disabled person or your children while you work, you can treat care costs that are less than or equal to 50% of your earnings as an expense. The carer must not be your spouse, partner, parent, child or sibling.

Example You earn £100 a week (after tax, national insurance and other expenses) and spend £60 a week on care while you work. You can treat £50 of this as an expense.

Payments that do not count as earnings include:

  • money received from pensions
  • contributions towards your living or accommodation costs from someone you live with (they cannot be a tenant or boarder)
  • the first £20 a week and 50% of the rest of any income you make from someone boarding in your home
  • a loan or advance payment from your employer

If you’re not eligible

You might be eligible for Carer’s Credit if you’re not eligible for Carer’s Allowance.