Caring responsibilities can be made even more challenging by reductions to household income or the added expenses involved with meeting care needs.
The staff at the Centre can provide information and advice in relation to welfare benefits and related supports and can assist with completing the various forms required.
The most common benefits we can give advice about include:
- Carers Allowance
- Attendance Allowance
- Disability Living Allowance
- Personal Independence Payment
- Employment Support Allowance
- Council Tax Discount
- Blue Badge applications
You may be able to claim Carer’s Allowance if you spend at least 35 hours a week caring. You don’t have to be related to, or live with, the person you care for.
You can usually get Carer’s Allowance if all of the following apply:
- you’re aged 16 or over
- you’re not in full time education
- you spend at least 35 hours a week caring for a disabled person
- you don’t earn more than £132 a week from employment or self-employment – after deductions such as income tax, National Insurance and half of your pension contributions
The person you’re caring for must get one of the following benefits, called ‘qualifying benefits’:
- Attendance Allowance
- Constant Attendance Allowance
- the middle or highest rate of the care component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
- the middle or highest rate of the care component of Child Disability Payment
- either rate of the daily living component of Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
- either rate of the daily living component of Adult Disability Payment
- Armed Forces Independence Payment
To make a claim for Carer’s Allowance you can:
- use the online Carer’s Allowance service
- download and print a Carer’s Allowance claim form, fill it in and send it by post to the Carers Allowance Team at DWP.
Carer’s Allowance Supplement
Carer’s Allowance Supplement is an extra payment for people in Scotland who get Carer’s Allowance.
Carer’s Allowance Supplement is paid 2 times a year.
Impact on other benefits
Carer’s Allowance Supplement will not affect other benefits such as housing benefit, income support, universal credit or council tax reduction. You do not need to tell anyone about this payment for benefit purposes and it will not affect the amount of any other benefit you receive.
Carer’s Allowance Supplement will not be counted as income in calculating your Tax Credits award. However, Carer’s Allowance itself continues to be counted as income for tax credits.
Carer’s Allowance Supplement will also not be taken into account in income assessments for college student support.
To find out more: https://www.mygov.scot/carers-allowance-supplement
Blue Badge Parking Scheme
If you are disabled or have a health condition that affects your mobility, or have a hidden disability, you can apply for a Blue Badge.
This enables you to park closer to the places you want to visit. The person you care for may also be eligible for a Blue Badge. The Blue Badge is linked to you rather than a vehicle, so it can be used with any car.
You can also apply for a badge if you care for a child with a health condition.
If you get certain benefits you’ll automatically be able to get a Blue Badge.
See Citizens Advice Scotland for information about applying for a Blue Badge.
Apply online for a Blue Badge on mygov.scot.
Attendance Allowance helps with extra costs if someone is over State Pension Age and has a health condition or disability severe enough that they need someone to help look after them.
Attendance Allowance is paid weekly at 2 different rates – the one you get depends on the level of help you need.
Attendance Allowance is not means-tested – what you earn or how much you have in savings will not affect what you get.
To find out more about Attendance Allowance and how to apply: https://www.gov.uk/attendance-allowance
While we can give basic advice and information about other benefits such as Universal Credit and Housing Benefit we would direct you to other sources of information and support such as:
East Renfrewshire Money Advice & Rights Team
East Renfrewshire Citizens Advice
East Renfrewshire Council Customer First
The team at Social Security Scotland have put together this presentation on the new Scottish Child Payment which opens for applications in November 2020. The document also includes information on how to apply for the new benefit.