Carer's Allowance & New Job

Hey all,

I currently care for my gran and have done for the last few years. I have been in and out of work the last year but never earning over £300 a month and have been claiming Carer’s allowance for nearly a year.

I have been offered a job internship for a company, it would be 35 hours a week and a salary of 16k. I would still be caring for my gran the remainder of the time, plus I could be working from home and would still be caring for her too whilst working at home.

The £250 a month I currently receive is a great help for me and I do not want to lose that once I start this new job. Is there anyway I can continue to receive this benefit or any loopholes? I read the sticky thread but didn’t quite understand.


Hi Max … seasons greetings … welcome to the canteen.

In essence , it’s £ 120 per week + Carers Allowance … full stop.

1p over £ 120 and the whole of Carers Allowance is lost.

No taper … just a cliff edge.

There are ways to marshall income to remain within the £ 120 but … given likely income … definately a case of jam tomorrow … and not today.

Several threads for you on this aspect from different angles … including the recent DWP purge thread … the DoleMan is always hovering in the background :
Our Forum | Carers UK

I trust that there is enough in the above threads for you to get the big picture.

Hi Max
At a salary of £16000 per annum you would be earning way over the limit of £120 a week for carers allowance, and given the current government clamp down on workers claiming carers allowance I doubt you would be able to show enough genuine expenses to bring yourself down to the limit. You’d have to contribute more than you earn in total to claim the pension contributions for example.
Better that you rejoice in getting employment and starting on a carer ladder leading to your future .
If gran has need of carers to cover you, then it depends on her financial circumstance whether she could get these paid for by Social Services. If she has money of her own she could give you money towards the caring you do to make up for you not being eligible for carers allowance any longer.


Tell us more about Gran, and we might be able to make a few suggestions.

My nan is relatively fine for mobility, however I do the shopping and washing up and cleaning of the house etc. She has mental health issues and needs someone with her majority of the day and every night.

HI Max, in that case, when did she last have a Social Services Needs Assessment, and you, a Carers Assessment?
Or does she have over £23,000 in savings?

Hey! I am unsure when she las had a social services needs assessment, I am unsure if she has ever had one. I had a carers assesment last month. She does not have more than 12k in savings.


Max, it sounds like without someone giving her a lot of help, she couldn’t live alone?
In this case, she should have a Needs Assessment. Didn’t the person doing the Carers Assessment mention services directly for her?!?!

That is correct, she could not live alone.

The person doing the carers assessment just mentioned about respite care, that is all. What exactly is a Needs Assessment?


Getting a needs assessment
If you think you, or someone you know, needs help to cope day-to-day, the first step is to get a needs assessment from your local council.

You’ll need to have this assessment before the council can recommend a service such as:

equipment like a walking frame or personal alarm.

changes to your home such as a walk-in shower.

practical help from a paid carer.

day care for your child if either you or they are disabled.

access to day centres and lunch clubs.

moving to a care home.

The needs assessment is free and anyone can ask for one.

How to get a needs assessment

Contact social services at your local council and ask for a needs assessment. You can call them or do it online.

Apply for a needs assessment

What happens in the assessment

Someone from the council such as a social worker or occupational therapist will ask you how you’re managing everyday tasks like washing, dressing and cooking.

They might ask you to describe how well you do certain things like making a cup of tea and getting out of a chair.

If it seems you may need some alterations in and around your home such as grab rails in the bathroom, you might also be referred for a separate assessment of your home.

The needs assessment can happen :

over the phone

Assessments usually last at least an hour.

How to prepare for your assessment
This is your chance to have your say.

Give as much detail as you can about all the everyday tasks you struggle with, even the little ones like turning taps on and off. Leaving out things might reduce the care recommended for you.

Which? Later Life Care has a checklist of typical questions you might be asked in the assessment regardless of your age.

Have someone with you

Have a friend or relative with you, if possible. It will help if you’re not confident explaining your situation. They can also take notes for you.

If you can’t have a friend or relative with you, you could use an advocate. Advocates are people who speak up on your behalf. They can help you fill in forms and sit with you in meetings and assessments. They’re often free. Find an advocate in your area.
Telephone help

If you want to talk to someone over the phone about needs assessments, call:

your local council’s social services department.

Age UK’s free helpline on 0800 055 6112.

Independent Age’s free helpline on 0800 319 6789.

The Family Rights Group’s free helpline on 0808 801 0366.

Getting the results

You’ll get the results of the assessment, usually within a week.

It identifies what kind of care and support would help you, such as a paid carer or meals delivered to your home (meals on wheels).
Paying for care

You’ll generally be expected to pay toward the cost of social care.
If the assessment identifies you need help, you will have a financial assessment (means test) to see if the council will pay towards it. This will be arranged for you.

What if I’m told I don’t need care ?
If the needs assessment finds that you don’t qualify for care and support, the council should still give you free advice about where you can get help in your community. Ask if this doesn’t happen.

How to complain about a needs assessment
If you disagree with the results of your needs assessment or how it was done, you have a right to complain.

First complain to your local council. Your council should have a formal complaints procedure on its website. It should also tell you about it at your assessment.

If you’re not happy with the way the council handles your complaint, you can take it to the local government and social care ombudsman. An ombudsman is an independent person who’s been appointed to look into complaints about organisations.

Needs assessment ?

There is always the financial element … a means test … is the caree able to afford whatever support is offered ?

Quite often , insufficent care is offered … perhaps a few hours per week … without a price tag … which , in reality , means that the caree has to buy in additional support … normally starting from £ 15 per hour.

Therein lies the conundrum for the carer … especially a lone carer … how to earn enough to provide that additional support ?

If not , who else will be available to provide that additional support ?

Need a clue ?

Oh yes , present Government policy is to encourage carers to juggle work with caring.

Fine … if one earns £ 40k+ per annum … or with a working partner … for others , pie in the sky !

Even then , for those claiming Carers Allowance , they are restricted to £ 120 per week ( £ 123 from April ) and still being able to claim CA.

£ 9 / 9.5k per annum … still leaves them BELOW the official poverty line.

Even increasing CA THREEFOLD will not change that situation !!!

Double that earnings limit … add a taper … still will not reduce the numbers near to that official poverty line.

Then , just how much does one need to provide that additional support ???

Government policy … at it’s finest ?

Our ranks continue to grow … 6,000 per DAY at the last count … anyone wonder why ???

I don’t think you can do both. Perhaps it would be better to find a good internship for 8 weeks, and during this time find a nurse for your gran who will take care of her.

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