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Carers Allowance given in one hand, taken back by the other! - Carers UK Forum

Carers Allowance given in one hand, taken back by the other!

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Hi to you all. I'm a new member so please be patient.
Please correct me if I'm wrong, I have been a carer to two of my children for many, many years, they are both registered blind, but I have only claimed carers allowance for the last 7 years. Now just my youngest (18 year old daughter) lives with me, she has been claiming incapacity benefit for a while and receives £190 every 2 weeks. I am on income support (£36.85) and claim carers allowance (£46.95), we struggle, just like many people do but we get by, no choice really! Well today I have been searching on the web benefits calculator as I am getting to the point of being incapable of looking after my daughter due to my own ill health. So I decided to search for information about what benefits I may be entitled to. Anyway, I checked what my daughters entitlement was first and was astonished at what I found, so unless I'm wrong my understanding is that because I claim carers allowance my daughter loses £21.75 each week! And because I receive carers allowance I have £46.95 deducted from my income support, totalling deductions of £68.70. I thought carers allowance was a benefit to help carers? Can someone please tell me if I’m right or wrong?
Hi Pasal3, and welcome.

The benefits system is complex and for advice you need to go to the Carers UK Helpline, or to a local benefits advice/welfare advice agency.

However, the Carers Allowance is "taken away" for Income Support because it is counted as an income. Some of it is added back in the "Carers Premium" - that's worth £26.35. So one way of looking at is that carers on Income Support only actually receive £26.35 instead of £46.95.

The whole benefits system is incredibly complex and tends to work against carers. It's best to get advice from a professional who understands the system.
Hi Charles 47,
I see what you mean regarding the way I/S and CA is worked out for me, and I agree it is a very complex system, but I also believe it is very unfair to carers. Thank you for your advice, I will do that.
Pasal3
The whole system is unfair to carers Image
The whole system is unfair to carers Image
You're right, Myrtle - I don't know a carer who'd disagree with you!
When I applied for carer allowance for my disabled husband we ended up no better off as my carer allowance was taken off his income support, and our rent and council tax payments increased.
I know a few folk on benefit who asked a welfare officer about carer allowance and they were told that they were better off not claiming it.
I fought for three years to get my "home responsibilities protection" the equivalent of an national insurance contribution to let me have my pension in my own right...to me that is the worthwhile part of the carer allowance, if I stay healthy long enough to retire!!
If you had to pay for a live in Carer it would cost you about £500 a week or £25,000 a year. For the yearly figure the government get 10 Carers on CA but in reality the majority of Carers only receive underlying entitlement to CA so may get 100 Carers for £25,000 or less than £5 a week per Carer. No wonder the cowboy outfit won't scrap the overlapping rule for CA and raise it to a decent level of around £450 a week, well Carers do what two care workers do. We had to have two care workers to get my wife out of bed when my back was bad because they are not allowed to lift Image but Carers have to.
When I applied for carer allowance for my disabled husband we ended up no better off as my carer allowance was taken off his income support, and our rent and council tax payments increased.
I know a few folk on benefit who asked a welfare officer about carer allowance and they were told that they were better off not claiming it.
I fought for three years to get my "home responsibilities protection" the equivalent of an national insurance contribution to let me have my pension in my own right...to me that is the worthwhile part of the carer allowance, if I stay healthy long enough to retire!!
That doesn't sound right to me, Meg. My understanding is that you should have seen a small increase of around £26 in your husband's Income Support - this is the "Carers Premium." It would also REDUCE, not increase, your Council Tax and Rent rebates. I'd check with the Carers Line at Carers UK for proper advice on this - have all your papers handy when you phone so they don't ask questions you can't answer - especially the one that explains how your benefits are worked out.