Caring and working part time

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
I'm currently claiming carers allowance and i was told If i earn more than £116 i will lose my entitlement to carers allowance. So i can't work 16 hours a week at minimum wage because this would take me to £120 a week.

I read somewhere that I can pay an amount into a pension and it would deduct from my earnings, however im not sure if that information is legit or not. I'm quite young so I know absolutely nothing about pensions or tax deductions. I doubt the social security offices are going to be keen on helping me with this lol Could anyone point me in the right direction? Thank you in advance.
I'm pretty sure that is correct about paying into a pension and 'taking down' the total you earn below that dreaded £116 limit.

Probably the easiest way to start a pension is to open a Sipp (Self Invested Personal Pension) - loads of companies, like the Prudential, etc, offer them, and they are a sort of 'savings account' in many ways. You'll only be paying in a few pounds every week, so you don't have to do lots of research into which particular company to go with. It's possible to have lots of Sipps, with different companies (ie, just like it's possible to have multiple bank accounts with different banks), and this will probably just turn out to be an 'extra' pension with a relatively small amount of money in it, when the time comes to cash it out when you are 60 or whatever.

It's well worth it, financially, to lose a few pounds off your wages than to lose CA !

You could start by asking your bank what they suggest for a Sipp provider, they probably have links to several, and it would narrow the choice down for you. You're really only doing this to protect your CA, so don't agonise too much!

You say you are quite young to be a carer - who is your caree? Is this a choice you have made for yourself, or do you feel 'obliged' in any way? Remember, you are entitled to a career and a life of your own!
jenny lucas wrote:
Tue Feb 20, 2018 9:49 pm
You say you are quite young to be a carer - who is your caree? Is this a choice you have made for yourself, or do you feel 'obliged' in any way? Remember, you are entitled to a career and a life of your own!
Thank you for your reply. I spend a lot of my week caring for my mother so i can't work full time right now. Most part time jobs are advertised at 16 hours per week which really complicates things as it takes me over £116 and i can't afford to lose carers allowance as i spend most my time caring.
You are quite right - you can deduct 50% of any payments made into a personal pension plan quite legitimately.

If you are earning, say, £120 per week you need to 'lose' a minimum of £4 per week. So you would need to pay £8 per week into the plan. It's often recommended to pay a bit more to take into account any overtime that you might earn in any given week. You can find more information on this and other deductions that can be made in the Carers UK Factsheet on Carers Allowance here: ... -allowance

However bear in mind that the earnings threshold for CA will rise to £120 per week from April this year.
Chris, how long do you think you will have to go on caring for your mum? Is her condition 'degenerative' - ie, getting worse, or is it likely to stay the same indefinitely'?

So many of us start caring, without really taking on board that it is a 'life sentence' - usually the length of life of the caree, and that can be a LONG time. Sometimes caring means we give up everything about our own lives, for many many years, and that is simply 'not right'. So do, please, think about the long term implications of what you are taking on - it's a hard decision to take!

For many youngish/middle aged folk to take on the care of an elderly parent, it is to condemn ourselves to poverty in our own later years, as we will have lost any chance to put by savings, make a career for ourselves, or even have a pension - or even, worst case scenario, we can end up homeless. Society casts out 'former carers' and leaves them to starve in the gutter! Be warned!