Carer's Allowance

This information applies to England and Wales.

You can submit a claim for Carer's Allowance if you look after someone for 35 hours per week or more and they receive certain benefits. You do not have to live with them or be related. Your claim can also be backdated by 3 months from the date you apply.

If you are working, you need to be earning less than £151 per week. This is after tax, National Insurance and expenses (including half your pension contributions).

Work and claiming benefits

You can apply for Carer’s Allowance if the person you're caring for receives any of the following:

Carer's Allowance (GOV.UK)

Easy read: Carer's Allowance (GOV.UK)

If you care for a disabled person, you can have an assessment to see what support might help make your life easier. This is called a carer's assessment, also known as a parent carer’s assessment. 

Carer’s assessment

Claiming Carer's Allowance and other benefits

Carer's Allowance can affect the benefits for the person who you care for.

Severe Disability Premium

You cannot claim Carer’s Allowance if the person you are caring for gets a Severe Disability Premium (SDP). Their SDP payment will stop.

Living with someone and Severe Disability Premium

If the person you care for gets SDP, they might get a higher award when they need to claim Universal Credit, through Transitional Protection. Carer’s Allowance is not protected in the same way.

What is Universal Credit (UC) transitional protection? (Turn2Us)

Means-tested benefits

Carer’s Allowance counts as income for other means-tested benefits, such as Universal Credit.

If you qualify for Carer’s Allowance, you are also eligible for the Carer Premium. This is extra money added to most means-tested benefits.

Make sure you declare your Carer’s Allowance to the offices that pay your other benefits. This means they can add your Carer Premium and calculate your benefits properly.

State Pension

If you are over State Pension age, you will only get Carer's Allowance if your State Pension is less than the weekly rate of Carer's Allowance.

It can still be worth applying. Being entitled to Carer's Allowance can lead to premiums being added to other benefits such as Pension Credit.

Pension Credit

How pensions affect benefits


You’re not eligible for Carer's Allowance if you’re a full-time student or studying for 21 hours or more a week.

How student finance affects your benefits

Carer's Allowance claim form

You can complete the form online.

Carer’s Allowance online claim (GOV.UK)

You can also apply by post, but you’ll need to download and print the Carer’s Allowance claim form (GOV.UK).

You can also get the form by contacting the Carers Allowance Unit on 0800 731 0297.

Warning Apply online

If you apply online for Carer’s Allowance, you’ll receive payments sooner than if you apply by post.

Help with your Carer's Allowance application

Further sources of information include:

Once you've claimed online, you should receive a decision by post in 3 weeks. If you've applied by post, it will take a few days more.

If you're not happy with the decision, you can challenge it.

Challenging a DWP decision about benefits

Last reviewed by Scope on: 01/04/2024

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