The National Audit Office has today (Friday 26th April 2019) released a report on its investigation into overpayments of Carer's Allowance. This is the main benefit for people caring for more than 35 hours a week.
Responding to the report's findings, Emily Holzhausen OBE, Director of Policy and Public Affairs at Carers UK, said:
“Overpayments of Carer’s Allowance have been causing a lot of stress for carers who are worrying about the financial repercussions on top of demanding caring responsibilities.
“It is clear the DWP’s decisions about the handling of Carer’s Allowance have resulted in carers not being told about overpayments quickly enough and this must be urgently addressed.
“Two thirds of carers with overpayments of more than £2,500 could have had them stopped earlier if there were sufficient staff to investigate those cases flagged.
“Finding money to repay the DWP is causing carers great distress and it could affect their incomes for years to come. The Department must look at the impact of their recovery of overpayments to ensure they don’t push people into further financial hardship.
“Carers should be able to work and care if they wish to without having to jump through hoops to do so. It is the DWP’s job to provide frequent and clear information about the earnings threshold, as well as a simpler way for carers to track and report their earnings.”