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Benefits for working age carers

If you are a working-age carer who is unable to work because of their caring commitments you may be able to claim Carer's Allowance which we have covered in a separate section.

If you get Carer's Allowance, or have an underlying entitlement to it, you may then become entitled to Universal Credit or one of various means-tested benefits.

And if you are already receiving one or more means-tested benefits you may be entitled to more of these benefits. This is because getting Carer's Allowance or having an underlying entitlement to it means that an extra amount of money called the 'carers premium/addition' is included in the calculation of the means-tested benefits you apply for.

You may find that you are entitled to one or more of the following means-tested benefits:-

 Or you may still be on one the following legacy benefits : 

If you are newly claiming benefits it is likely that you would be claiming Universal Credit but if you have one of the legacy benefits then you would not be moved onto Universal Credit until November 2020 at the earliest.

Remember that means-tested benefits take into account how much income and savings you and your household have.

You can do an online check of your entitlement to benefits by using the website's Benefits Adviser calculator or the independent Entitled To benefits calculator.

Tax credits

Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit are paid to top up the incomes of families or workers with a low income. The amount you get of either  /both depends on your household taxable income. 

Go to our section on Tax and tax credits for more information

Carer's Leave

Until recently, unpaid carers didn’t have a right to time off from work for caring responsibilities. This has left many people feeling forced to use their holiday allowance or having to take sick leave.

On 6th April 2024, the Carer’s Leave Act passed into regulations and is now in effect.

The Carer’s Leave Act says anyone in employment who cares for someone can take up to five days' unpaid leave for their caring responsibilities every year. You don’t need to have already told your employer you’re a carer to use the law. And you don’t have to tell your employer what you want to use it for.

All employers now have a legal responsibility to give people carer’s leave when they ask for it. But some employers might not know about the new law yet.

If your employer doesn’t know about carer’s leave, you can direct them to the government’s information about Carer’s Leave on their website.

Other information and advice

The following websites offers advice on benefits options for carers : 

Last updated: 10/04/2024