thanking you always 

Caring is a part of our everyday lives, but for the many adults in the UK who look after someone on a regular basis, the responsibility can become a full-time job. From cleaning and cooking to shopping and bathing, ordinary tasks can become difficult for someone with physical or mental ill health. 
If they need someone else to support them, that person is seen as a carer and can apply for benefits. 

What is Carer’s Allowance? 

Carer’s Allowance is a UK taxable benefit for individuals who provide “regular and substantial” care to someone for 35 hours or more a week. It was set up to financially support people who are unable to stay in employment due to caring commitments. Claimants can earn up to £132 a week after tax, National Insurance and expenses, though carers receiving a higher income may still be eligible. 
As well as the specific hours and income, Carer’s Allowance applicants also need to be aged 16 or over, live in England, Scotland or Wales, and not be in full-time education or studying for more than 21 hours weekly. Further eligibility criteria applies, including the type of care being given and the circumstances of the person receiving care – there is a helpful guide on the GOV.UK website. 

How Much is Carer’s Allowance? 

Carer’s Allowance is calculated based on individual earnings and is not means tested or dependant on National Insurance contributions or savings. The amount is currently up to £69.70 per week and usually increases around April of each year. Carer’s Allowance is counted as taxable income. 
Eligible individuals can apply for Carer’s Allowance by visiting the GOV.UK website and completing the online form. The form can also be downloaded and printed to be returned by post. There is no phone or email system for claims, but the Carer's Allowance Unit offer advice on 0800 731 0297. 

Can You Receive Carer’s Allowance While Working? 

Many carers decide to continue with a part-time or flexible working position to supplement their income. So long as the eligibility criteria regarding hours and earnings are met, they will still be able to receive Carer’s Allowance. There are also additional benefits and extra help available to carers
Some local councils will be able to fund respite care for people who need to take some time off or are themselves suffering from physical or mental ill health. Many charities also offer financial and emotional support, including Age UK who provide information, respite care and support groups

Starting a Career in Care 

Being a carer takes specific skills, strength of character and a dedication to helping others. For those who have been a carer in the past or would like more work, joining the sector can be a welcome way of using their existing experience to form a rewarding career. 
At Hands-on Healthcare, we are dedicated to supporting carers in finding the right role for their needs and circumstances.  
 
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