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Carer's Allowance and Carer Support Payment

Caring holding hands

If you look after a partner, relative or friend, who has a disability or health condition and would find it difficult to manage without your support, then you are a carer.

Many people don’t see themselves as carers, because they see the support they give as part of their relationship. However, if you are a carer there may be help, including financial help, available for you.

Carer’s Allowance is the main carer benefit paid by the Department for Work and Pensions. Carer Support Payment is gradually replacing Carer’s Allowance in Scotland, and is paid by Social Security Scotland.

If you are making a new claim, you can check which one you should apply for on the Social Security Scotland website. The amount is the same, and eventually everyone who is claiming Carer's Allowance will be moved over to Carer Support Payment. 

To qualify for Carer's Allowance or Carer Support Payment, you must:

  • spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone who has care or support needs. It doesn’t matter whether or not you live with them. The 35 hours can include time spent helping them practically, supporting them emotionally or being there to keep them safe
  • care for someone who receives a qualifying benefit:
    - Attendance Allowance
    - Adult Disability Payment (care component)
    - Personal Independence Payment (care component)
    - Disability Living Allowance (high or middle rate care component)
    - Armed Forces Independence Payment
    - Constant Attendance Allowance
  • not be earning more than £151 a week. For Carer’s Allowance, you usually can’t be in full time education.

The Carer's Allowance and Carer Support Payment rules are complex. Claiming can affect the benefits you receive, and the benefits received by the person you care for. To check how making a claim will affect your entitlements, and whether you will be better off overall, call the Age Scotland helpline on 0800 12 44 222 and ask for a benefit check.

Benefit Workshops

The benefits system is complicated. It can be difficult to work out what you are entitled to, and how to claim it. Find out more about joining one of our Benefit Workshops here

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