Carer Allowances


Registered User
May 4, 2005
Tyne & Wear
Age of Carer

Hi Bruce

I have voted in your poll but not for myself, for my Dad's partner as she is his carer. But I wondered if you could answer a question for me.

My Dad's partner was advised to apply for a carers allowance which she did, only to be turned down because she is too old.

Just because she is 65 doesn't mean she has 'retired' from caring!!!!

Do you know if it is right that she is too old, or is there another allowance that she may be entitled to? We want Dad to stay at home for a long as possible.



Registered User
Jan 31, 2004
near London
Hi Carol

I'm no expert on allowances... why not call the Help Line, or just follow up what the others have suggested.

Good luck!


Registered User
May 4, 2005
Tyne & Wear
Carers Allowance

Hi to you all,

Norman, I hadn't thought about that, Dad doesn't get any allowances as I assumed he wouldn't be entitled to anything as he has a reasonable pension but I think I need to look into this a bit more.

Thanks Angela, again, I'll look into this although I probably don't do enough of the caring to qualify but it's certainly worth looking into.

Brucie, I will talk to Hazel, Dad's partner and ring the Help Line as they can probably answer other questions as well as this one.

Can I just say, this is the first time I've ever posted anything on a web site and I am so pleased I did.

I have found just reading through some of the posting very helpful and I will certainly be writing again.

But at the moment I'm finding it hard to decide just what to write (without writing a novel !!!). There are so many things I'd like to discuss/ask, to see how other people cope.

Thanks again for your replies.



Registered User
Oct 9, 2003
Birmingham Hades
Hi Carol
go to the top lefthand corner of this page ,click on fact sheets.
You will find a great deal of information there


Registered User
May 2, 2005
Wirral UK
attendance allowance

Hi Carole,

My dad is also on quite a good pension but has been receiving attendence allowance for some years as it is not means tested.



Registered User
May 4, 2005
Tyne & Wear
Hi Alan

Dad's partner was a bit confused about all the forms she'd completed but it turned out they had applied for Attendance Allowance as well as Carers allowance and they received a letter on Friday saying it's been granted. That's great news, and it's backdated to the beginning of March when they applied.

I've also been looking at other information from the fact sheets to see if there's anything else we should be considering.

Thanks again to everyone for your advice.



I find it totally appalling that this Government consider anyone over 60 is not eligible for carers allowance

Clearly they think we should spend our retirement and in my case a total insult of £34 in state pension being run ragged looking after a demented parent

Well sadly my Mother treated me like a non entity my entire life and heaped scorn on me when i was ill with Aluminium poisoning 20 yrs ago and thus went to the edge of AD and back so the powers that be sure as heck need not try expecting me to take on the burden

I will know all too well if i start developing dementia or any other terminal disease and i will relieve my family of the worry and strife


Registered User
Feb 17, 2006
I gave up working a year ago to look after mum as I could not balance work with looking after mum fulltime, but am going to go back for my own sanity.

If I earn more then £100 I do not get any care payments it’s a joke, if I put my mother in a care home it would cost the government more then £300 a week.

Just say all carer said right lets go on strike lol we all arrange to put are relatives in rest bite at the same time & then say right we not taking them back till you pay us what we are worth could you imagine it lol .................ok joking aside

Is it right that I heard or read that care for my mum is free if I go back to work ,to bring in a carer for her while I go to work ?


Registered User
Feb 24, 2006
I am not a "carer" as I don't live with my mother, only stayed with her full-time for about 2 months to rehabilitate her when she came home from hospital. When she was due for discharge the OT said there'd be an intermediate care team coming along for 6 weeks, but for some reason (possibly my brother's fault) that was cancelled. In the end care workers were arranged by Social Services, and as my mother has less than £24 K in savings she doesn't have to pay for them, (the value of her house is not assessed while she is still living in it). To start with the paid carers came 3 times a day but she didn't give the midday carer anything to do so as they are short-staffed they reduced it to 2 visits a day. The morning "girl" makes her breakfast and gets her washed and dressed and makes her bed, the evening one heats up her supper and gets her ready for bed. My mother can now do most things for herself, it is mainly a question of not remembering or not feeling it's worth the bother to eat or dress.

She doesn't get Carers' Allowance because the doctors say she doesn't need full-time care.

And is proving that she doesn't need it now (she did, in those first 2 months out of hospital), managing most days much better than anyone had expected.

She needs frequent phone conversations to go through her daily routine, to remind her what she is supposed to tell the care workers to do.

She has become very fond of them, predictably, she has to be fond of someone or something, and that helps to motivate her to do things.

So if they lie and cheat and steal she doesn't want us to complain about them. "I love them so much."


Registered User
Apr 6, 2006

I registered my dad as carer as 1) he is and 2) unfortunately when I left home there was a lot of bitterness & animosity on my part. Now the only things is worry as now my dad will not be able to cope. My siblings are abroad & I have a young family & I'm left to sort it out once again.


Registered User
Dec 7, 2007
I'm new to the forum, and this is my first post, I voted in the pol because I am my husbands sole carer, he's been diagnosed with alzheimers for about 3 yrs. but he's probably had it for much longer. He's been on the lower Attendance Allowance for many years because of his walking, but is now on the higher amount.


Registered User
Dec 5, 2007
East Sussex
My understanding of the disability and carers benefits is as follows:

Disability Living Allowance is a benefit that people aged under 65 can apply for. This has a mobility and care component and you are assessed for both and then given a band (low, meduim or high) which determines the level of benefit you receive. This can be reviewed at any time though. Usually, once you receive DLA you continue to receive it for the rest of your life, unless of course your condition improves and you no longer need care.

Attendance Allowance is a benefit for people aged 65 plus. There is a high and low rate. You only qualify for the high rate if you need help or supervision etc... at night time.

Both of the above are non means tested benefits, so you could be wealthy and still be entitled to the benefit. You usually need to wait 6 months after the date of a medical diagnosis before you can apply for these benefits though.

Carers Allowance has a wide range of eligibility criteria and is means tested. Currently, you can earn around £95 per week and still be entitled to Carer's Allowance. But you must be under 60/65 years old and caring for someone for over 35 hours a week.

If you have retired, you may be entitled to Pension Credits to top up your pension. Tell the DWP that you're a carer and you may be also be entitled to the Carer's Premium which means that you get extra Pension Credits, which means more money!

I hope this helps, it's always worthwhile getting professional advice though...this link is quite helpful and gives you telephone numbers to call if you would like advice.


Registered User
Jan 31, 2004
near London
Moderator note from Brucie:

The content of this thread began originally as a 'by the way, what about' to one of the polls on TP.

I have split these posts from the thread where they were already posted because they might be missed there by many members.

So now they have a thread of their own.


Registered User
Aug 20, 2006
Anyone receiving State Pension cannot receive Carers Allowance. This is because both benefits are regarded as "salary replacements" (somewhat laughable considering Carer Allowance is less than £50 a week, whilst Government regards the basic State Pension as not enough to live on - hence Pension Credit - but I digress).

However, this said, it would still be worth applying; this is because your Dad's partner could have the Carer Premium added to her State Pension.

The Carer Premium is not a payment, but what it does do is to lift the upper income limits which disqualify the partner from Pension Credit. Essentially, her income can be higher and she could still get Pension Credit.

I think it raises the bar by about £25/week.

Pension Credit is always worth having, possibly not in direct monetary terms, but also because it unlocks many other benefits (you will very often see "if in receipt of Pension Credit" on forms).

As regards Attendance Allowance; many things qualify you for this. It does not need to be medical - it;s about helpyou need. It is in fact that you need someone to "attend" you. It could be things like personal care (dressing, washing, etc) to someone making sure you are safe (if you forget to take tablets, wander, at risk of falling etc).

The form is quite lengthy and I strongly recommend you get someone "professional" to help you fill it in (for example CAB) because they will know how to put things, what things are relevent, etc. There are many criteria that count but only if you show they count in the right way - eg a certain number of minutes help over a certain number of hours per day counts as "help thoughout the day")

Also, you can qualify on the help you need, not on the help you actually get (because the allowance is to help pay for that help)

Attendace Allowance is not means tested and is tax-free (or rather, it does not count as part of your taxable income). Carer Allowance is means tested (earnings related, but not savings) and is taxable!

Also, remember that someone getting Carer Allowance who has a low income AND only small savings may also qualify for Income Support.

The definition of "care" is quite broad (includes things like shopping, laundry etc), all you need to do is have the person confirm you spend 35 hours per week or more caring for them, the form looks complicated but it is far easier than Attendance Allowance because the CA one is ticking boxes whilst AA you have to put a lot of descriptive things..

I got AA for my Dad (Alz) and my Mum (Parkinsons) without much difficulty, even though I did it all myself (which is why I say get help), and Carer Allowance for myself.

Also remember that a couple can - if they both get something like AA - be each other's carers and both get Carer Allowance. Receiving AA doesn;t disqualify you from getting CA (for example, mum might have dreadful arthritis but is still able to make sure Dad takes his pills)
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linda a

Registered User
Jun 13, 2006
Its Madness

Im 17 years younger than my husband who was dignosed with Lewy Bodies 2 years ago
We have a 18 nearly 19 year old daughter who is studing for her A Levals
I do not get carers allwance because my earings are to much i am not a high earner, i work from home and look after my husband full time we do get carers come in twice a day to get him showerd and dreesed and in the evening to get ready for bed,
He also goes to a day center twice a week ,
Because things have now got very hard we have to look at care homes so a fight now with S S to keep him close its all a worry ,
But i cannot afford to give up work to look after my husband even if i wanted to ,
I think there needs to be a very big shake up we carers save the goverment so much money,
I think also when he goes into care our home well his half will be for there pay back,And im still left with a morgage ,
Now if he needed to go and have a operation or even prision at the end whould he be sent a bill !!!!!!!!!NO
But because of this awfull illness which has turned all our lives upside down
we are left with guilt and worry i cannot make any sence out of this,


Registered User
Feb 17, 2006
Hi Linda

I think also when he goes into care our home well his half will be for there pay back,And im still left with a morgage
As far as as I know they can not touch the house if your husband go into care , as long as you and your daughter live it in .

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
Dear Linda.

I agree with you about the short straw Carers draw, but I want to reassure you about your house.

The only way there will be a claim on your house is if you sell it. Then you might have to pay back your husband`s half share. But if he goes into a NH you can live in your home for the rest of your life.

Margaret W

Registered User
Apr 28, 2007
North Derbyshire
Hi all,

State benefits are a nightmare and there is no easy A4 sheet of paper that can cover everything. Icklebutterfly and Nebiroth both gave a good outline. Some further comments.

Attendance Allowance - most people with AD will qualify for the higher rate, as most of them need some care at night - if only someone on call. Also, yes, you cannot claim it till the person has needed care for 6 months, but that doesn't have to be a formal diagnosis. I took my mum to the doc in September 2006 only to be told she was fine. In Feb 2007 I took her again, and when I made her claim for AA I explained to them in a letter that by Feb 2007 I was having to monitor her behaviour day and night, so I was able to backdate my claim till then, even though she wasn't diagnosed till July 2007. Attendance allowance is not means-tested and is also not taxable, so what you get is what you keep. The person doesn't have to actually GET the help they need, just need it. So if you relly needs to be able to contact you in the night but never does, it is still payable.

Carers Allowance - no you don't get it if you are over state pension age, but claim it anyway, as when my dad was ill it entitled my mum to council tax benefit - over £1,000 a year cancelled! And having a diagnosis of AD - a severe mental condition - also cancels council tax for that person. And opens doors to other benefits.

All else I can add is that when you make these claims, and have to fill in the various boxes, of course be honest, but also be realistic. Think carefully about what help your relative needs and when they first needed it - those of you with relatives still in early stages and without a diagnosis, get yourselves a little notebook and note EVERYTHING down, like "Mum had to ring me this morning to see what time it was, she thought it was afternoon". I thought my mum didn't need help with dressing until I realised she had her skirt on inside-out!

Make no mistake, these benefits will not make you rich or even comfortable. But they might help. Carer's allowance must be the biggest joke the government have ever thought up. Yes, there must be a rethink of how we pay for the care of the elderly, but until there is, make the most of every benefit that is available, and don't feel at all guilty at claiming it. Most of us are doing the job "blind" and saving the taxpayer a fortune. Now I'm a taxpayer (as are lots of you), and so far I haven't seen much use for the huge amount of tax I pay (a couple of wars, maybe?, lets not get too political), but the care of the elderly surely has to be addressed - and soon.

Love to all, and good luck with filling in the forms - if anyone wants any help, just ask.



Registered User
May 14, 2007
South East London/Surrey border
Linda, you really don't have to worry about your house.

Social services cannot take it into consideration when doing a financial assessment as long as you continue to live there.

I too have a large mortgage and a husband about to go into care and have spoken at length to the Legal Advisor at the Alz Society about all the housing issues.

I am very likely to sell and downsize this year and was worried how this would affect things. I should stress that if I sell, it's not because 'anyone' is forcing me to but purely to minimise my monthly outgoings and clear some of the mortgage. As long as any new property is purchased in joint names I am free to do as I wish. Equity released will be used to reduce the mortgage and all associated moving costs can also come from the equity. Unless we end up with joint savings in excess of £26,000, the move will have no impact on our assessment with regard to social services funding of Peter's care.

You may be in a similar position. Worrying about finances and allowances is an awful part of this illness as well, and I've found it very difficult to get appropriate advice. I really hope you manage to get things sorted out.