Carers allowance and self employment

Hello, I’d really appreciate some advice. I’ve spent days trawling through the internet for an answer but have failed. Most similar topics on this forum have advised to phone the carers UK advice line. I did this but was told it wasn’t something they could advise on and they suggested I contacted CAB. I then also did this but after answering a few questions I was told I am outside of their catchment area and they can’t help me. So if anyone in a similar situation has any solid advice i’d be really grateful.

I receive carers allowance for looking after my mum and income support on top. I’d really like to come off of income support and attempt to be self employed, just so that I’m actually a little self sufficient rather than relying on benefits. I already know i’ll be allowed to earn £123 per week through self employment after allowable deductions, but my question is how will I go about proving my earnings to the DWP?

From reading online it seems they ask for previous years accounts to show your average earnings, but as i’ll be newly self employed I don’t have any previous records to show them. How often do they want to see what you’ve earned? Will it be on a week by week basis? Monthly? Or can I send them my earnings once a year and have that averaged out over 52 weeks? (Obviously the preferable option as I’m sure i’ll have low periods of trading initially and hopefully higher later on in the year.)

Do they send me forms to fill in? What do I need to supply? Will it be a meticulous breakdown of everything I’ve spent/sold or just a basic sum of incomings and outgoings?

Sorry for so many questions, I’m just desperate for some advice from someone who has been in this same situation. I know the simple option is probably to phone the DWP directly and ask, but I’m worried the second they get a hint that i’m planning on earning they’ll suspend my carers allowance before my situation has even changed which would leave me with literally 0 money.

For anyone who’s made the same transition into self employment whilst receiving carers allowance, did they suspend your benefit? If so how long for?

I just want to gain some idea of how the whole system works, how easy it is to report my earnings and if it’s actually going to be worth doing or if I’m likely to create myself more problems than I solve.

Massive thank you in advance to anyone who’s able to offer some information on this.

Hi Nathan.

You appear to be in a Catch 22 here ?

There are no experts on the forum … in cases like this , we would recommend either the CAB and / or CUK Advice Team.

If neither can help , the only option may well be the DWP themselves ?

Suggest adding your posting to this thread :

Thank you! As above, both CAB and CUK were unable to advise so was just hoping for some insight from someone who’s had the same problem and found a way through already. Failing that it’ll be contacting the DWP but that’s definitely going to be a last resort.

I wish you luck , Nathan.

Nothing wrong with question !

Will you be having an account.
I would suggest an account would be able to help here.

An accountant … conversant with current benefit law and practice ?

Rare as hens teeth in some areas , more around in less properous ones ?

When I was self employed my account knew all about the benefit and tax systems. And was reasonable priced. Especially for peace of mind.

In which case , you really did find that needle in the haystack !

Worksop … 30,000 odd souls …14 registered accountants.

Local CAB used to recommend two … one in Sheffield , one in Nottingham … for specialist work involving the benefit system
, self employed start ups mainly.

I won’t have an accountant. It’ll be a simple business structure keeping receipts and invoices and deducting money out from money in and reporting the sum to HMRC on my self assessment each year. I won’t be earning anywhere near enough to warrant (or afford!) an accountant and I certainly won’t be having a turnover high enough to worry about the complications of VAT registration.

I’ll lose around £75 a week by coming off income support, so initially the goal is only to make just over £10 a day profit to recoup what I’ve lost. Obviously hopes for future progression and higher profits but initially it’s more about doing something for myself rather than relying on benefit payments. Only talking trivial money to start, hence why I’m eager to know if it’s even going to be worth the headache getting into it with the DWP. :slight_smile:

A crystal ball job … projected cash flow / profit and loss … need to hit those figures or lose monies … unknown
upside / known downside ( Potential loss of / decrease in IS and time / energy spent ) … ?

Not a decision for the faint hearted … and I speak from 20 odd years of high street banking experience.

For every one winner , there are several losers.

Will mostly be digital art. Will be free to create, only cost will be my time. Listed online, and printed and posted on a buy by buy basis. So won’t have any wastage or need for start up costs. Simply buy ink and canvas as and when orders come in. Only risk involved is the loss of £75 a week income support. :slight_smile: Not aiming big, aiming realistic for now.

Have you searched the forum for “self employment” and “own business”
I thought someone asked similar a long time back - I’ve been here over 3 years. I think it was someone setting up some art business
Try a variety of searches