Carers allowance - very confused

I hope I’ve posted this in the right group!

I’m a carer for my disabled daughter who is in receipt of DLA. Since her condition has worsened I have had to leave work to become her carer, I have only just received an award for carers allowance because I didn’t even know it existed until this year! I am now claiming universal credit and I’m really worried I’ve done something wrong and I’m claiming something I shouldn’t be.

Should I of applied for carers allowance if universal credit has a carers element? (Again I didn’t know it existed until I was having a browse of my online journal)

I’ve received a back pay of carers allowance and I’m really worried I’m not entitled to it and I’m going to get into trouble with dwp.
I’ve read so much stuff online that is contradicting.

Can you claim Carers allowance and the universal credit carers element?

Somebody please help me out and give me some info as I need to call universal credit tomorrow and don’t want to sound like I’ve purposely claimed fraudulently.

Thank you!! :smiley:

Hi Lemonade … welcome.

Universal Credit ?

A title of a book made up of several chapters … said chapters being the individual benefits.

I assume that you are claiming more benefits … probably the income variety … as well as Carers Allowance ?

The Carer Element within Universal Credit :

Carer element

This element will be added to the maximum amount of Universal Credit where the claimant has regular and substantial caring responsibilities. This means that the person meets the entitlement conditions for carer’s allowance including caring for at least 35 hours a week. It also includes a person who would be entitled to carer’s allowance but their earnings are too high. There is no requirement to actually claim carer’s allowance.

Only 1 carer element is allowed per claimant and in joint claims two carer elements can be included providing both claimants are not caring for the same disabled person. If both claimants care for the same person, then they can decide who gets the carer element.

More detailed information about the carer element can be found in ADM Chapter F6.

Elements « Entitlement to Universal credit « Guidance « Universal Credit


Carer’s Allowance and Universal Credit.

Universal Credit is gradually replacing means-tested benefits (such as Income Support) for people of working age. You will get less Universal Credit if you’re receiving Carer’s Allowance. However, you’ll receive an extra amount, known as a carer amount.

As a first step . I recommend crunching some numbers through an Online Benefits Calculator :

That will give you a good approximation of the total due under UC , and the individual parts that make it up.

Then , for confirmation , bounce said CA element off either your local branch of the CAB or the Carers UK Advice Team
… their contact details follow … for the CUK Advice Team , best by email :

Either will be able to advise on any abnormalities thrown up.

Council Tax … discount / disregard ?

Have a ponder , and let us know how matters progress.

I’m tagging along here because I’m about to be in this boat. I’m told I can claim UC and CA once I quit work (that’s straight from the benefits folks who cover the area I live in). I earn too much right now for CA (by about 4 hours a week but can’t drop those hours because it’ll affect my redundancy). But my anxiety is going to make it difficult to seek further work for awhile so I don’t know what else I can maybe claim.

Tammie, in that case, make sure you know what you can deduct from your income, i.e. child care, before CA is calculated.

Marshalling :

Allowable deductions
If you are affected, you may be able to make deductions from your earnings to help you keep your CA payments without having to cut your hours.

These include:

Income tax and National Insurance contributions (NIC).

Half of any contributions that you make into a work or personal pension.

Certain business expenses that you as an employee pay for but your employer does not reimburse. Such an expense must, as for income tax purposes, be incurred in the performance of the duties of the employment and be wholly, exclusively and necessarily incurred.

Examples of expenses for which deductions may be made are:

special tools and clothing (sometimes a £60 flat rate deduction is available).

professional fees and subscriptions.

telephone calls made entirely for work purposes.

business mileage or other work related travel expenses and any associated subsistence costs (if you use your own car business mileage can be deducted at up to 45p per mile).

some costs of working from home.

Please note that the deductions allowable under the Department for Work and Pension’s (DWP) rules are separate to those allowable under HMRC’s rules. However the DWP do cross refer to what HMRC allow for income tax purposes. You can find out more about the income tax treatment of employment expenses on our website.

You can also take off up to half of your earnings (after the above deductions if they apply) for amounts you pay to someone to look after either a child under 16 who you or your partner get child benefit for, or the person you are the carer for, when you are at work (so long as you pay someone other than a close relative).

If your earnings after deductions vary, you may still be able to claim CA for the weeks when they are below the £120 limit. The DWP also has the discretion to average your earnings over a five-week period, or a ‘recognisable cycle of work’ if you have one.

Should you need it to refer to, you can find the DWP Decision Makers Guidance dealing with the calculation of earnings on GOV.UK.


Thanks for the replies.

I claim UC, child benefit, DLA which is for my daughter and now carers allowance.

I haven’t applied for council tax help since leaving work so I still pay the full amount of council tax.

Online Benefit Calculator.

Results ?

In line with the global amount paid under Universal Credit ?

A+B+C = UC ?

No mention of housing ?

Definitely sort that out, it can be backdated too.

Council Tax discounts ?

Apply for a Council Tax discount - GOV.UK

Simply enter your postcode.