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Ask the expert: how does one claim affect another

Jen, from the Carers UK adviceline, answers a question about how different claims interact with each other.

You asked:

My father has recently been awarded Attendance Allowance. If I make a claim for Carer’s Allowance for looking after him, could it affect his Attendance Allowance payments?

Adviceline

Our advisor says:

If you claim Carer’s Allowance for looking after your father, then his Attendance Allowance wouldn’t be affected in any way. If your father is receiving a State Pension or an occupational/personal pension then these payments wouldn’t be affected either.

However, if your father is receiving any means-tested benefits, then your claim for Carer’s Allowance could affect these.

The means-tested benefits that could be affected are:

  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • income-based Jobseekers Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Pension Credit
  • Housing Benefit
  • Council Tax Reduction.

If he is receiving the severe disability premium (called the severe disability addition within Pension Credit) as part of his means-tested benefits, he will lose this if you are paid Carer’s Allowance for looking after him.

The severe disability premium (or severe disability addition within Pension Credit) is £62.45 a week, and might be included in your father’s means-tested benefits if he meets all of the following conditions:

  • he gets a qualifying disability benefit (which includes the middle or the higher rate of the care component of Disability Living Allowance; either rate of the daily living component of Personal Independence Payment or either rate of Attendance Allowance); and
  • he lives alone (there are some exceptions to this - such as if he lives with other people who also receive a qualifying disability benefit they will all count as living alone); and
  • no one is paid Carer’s Allowance for looking after him.

Therefore, if your father is getting this severe disability premium (or severe disability  addition within Pension Credit) included in his means-tested benefits, he will lose this if you are paid Carer’s Allowance for looking after him. This would mean that the amount of his means-tested benefits would go down.

However, if your father is not getting this severe disability premium (or severe disability addition within Pension Credit) included in his means-tested benefits (for example if he is not entitled to this because he lives with his partner who does not get a qualifying disability benefit), then his means-tested benefits wouldn’t be affected by you claiming Carer’s Allowance for looking after him.

It is also worth noting that if you only get the ‘underlying entitlement’ to Carer’s Allowance (which means you can’t be paid Carer’s Allowance because you are already getting certain other benefits including a State Pension), then this wouldn’t have any impact on your father’s means-tested benefits even if he is receiving the severe disability premium (or severe disability addition within Pension Credit).

I hope this helps, and remember that if you need to talk this through you can contact the Carers UK Adviceline by emailing us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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