Advice & Information

Summary:

What you will find on this page

  • Financial:
    • Carers Allowance
    • Disability Benefits
    • Personal Independence Payment
    • Pension Credit
    • Universal Credit
    • Attendance Allowance
  • Getting care and support:
    • Care at Home
    • Coming Out of Hospital
  • Managing Someone’s Affairs:
    • Financial Assessment
    • Power of Attorney

Financial

– Carers Allowance

Carer’s Allowance is the main benefit for carers. If you are looking after someone for 35 hours a week or more, you may be eligible.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, new measures (from 30 March) allow unpaid carers to continue to claim Carer’s Allowance if they have a temporary break in caring, because they or the person they care for gets coronavirus or if they have to isolate because of it.

The government has also confirmed that providing emotional support counts towards the Carer’s Allowance threshold of 35 hours of care a week across the UK.

Carer’s Allowance is currently paid at £67.25 a week (2020-21).

Carer’s Allowance is not based on your income and capital (or any partner’s). However, there is a cap on how much you can earn from work and still be entitled to Carer’s Allowance.

Carer’s Allowance is taxable. However, carers will only have to pay tax if they have other sources of taxable income such as occupational or personal pensions or part-time earnings, and if this combined income takes them over the threshold for paying tax. Carer’s Allowance on its own is below this threshold.


Disability Benefits:

All disability benefits are not means tested, however if awarded, there may be other entitlements available.

NB: you can only get ONE disability benefit, BUT be on different rates.

Example: A person could be on low rate mobility with Personal independence payment, their care and health needs have increased, they will then need to ask for a review to include the care component.

Rates 06/04/2020 – 05/04/2021

Disability Living Allowance: Age 0 -16  

CareMobility
£23.60 Low rate£23.60 Low rate
£59.70 Middle£62.25 High rate
£89.15 Higher

Personal Independence payment: Age 16- 66

CareMobility
£59.70 Standard£23.60 Standard
£89.15 Enhanced£62.25 Enhanced

Attendance Allowance: Age 66 and above  

Care 
59.70 Lower
£89.15 Higher

Disability Living Allowance:

Can only be claimed for children aged under 16 who have extra health and care needs, medical and/or supporting evidence will be needed to apply.


Personal Independence Payment

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) can help you with some of the extra costs if you have a long term ill-health or disability.

You could get between £23.60 and £151.40 a week if you’re aged 16 or over and have not reached State Pension age.

The amount you get depends on how your condition affects you, not the condition itself.

You could get between £23.60 and £151.40 a week if you’re aged 16 or over and have not reached State Pension age.

The amount you get depends on how your condition affects you, not the condition itself.

You’ll be assessed by a health professional to work out the level of help you can get. Your rate will be regularly reviewed to make sure you’re getting the right support.


Pension Credit

Pension Credit is a top up benefit, for a person or couple of state pension age who have a lower income threshold. Contact us for a full benefit check to see if there is an entitlement.

Example:

Mr and Mrs Jones receive their state pensions and there is a small shortfall, pension credit is claimed, it is paid to one person in the couple. Pension credit is paid to Mr Jones. Mr Jones has health and care needs and can no longer live at home; he is moved into a care home, his benefits stop. Mrs Jones can make a new claim for Pension Credit, she will be classed as a single claim.


Universal Credit

If you are on a low income or unemployed, you may be able to claim Universal Credit (UC) which is a means-tested benefit (meaning the amount of income and capital you have can affect your eligibility).

In the light of Covid-19, the standard rate in Universal Credit and Tax Credits will be increased by £20 a week for one year from 6 April, meaning claimants will be up to £1040 better off. For further details, see the latest news on the Gov.uk website. Note that if you claim Universal Credit, the rules around minimum income will also be relaxed for the duration of the outbreak of coronavirus. You will also be able to claim Universal Credit and access advance payments without having to visit a jobcentre.


– Attendance Allowance

Attendance Allowance is a benefit that helps with the extra costs of long-term illness or disability, which can be either physical and/or mental. It is for people over their state pension age.

Attendance Allowance isn’t means-tested. This means it can be paid regardless of your income, savings or National Insurance contribution record and is a tax free benefit. If you are a carer who has care needs, you can claim Attendance Allowance for yourself and this will not affect your Carer’s Allowance. The person who is cared for may also be eligible for this benefit.

Getting Attendance Allowance does not reduce other benefits, it may even increase them. If you have a carer then claiming Attendance Allowance may help them to qualify for certain benefits (such as Carer’s Allowance). Attendance Allowance may also entitle you and/ or your carer to further help with council tax.


Getting Care and support

– Care at Home

If you are finding it difficult to manage with your personal care needs, home care services may be able to help you cope with daily living.

Some people start to find it harder to manage day-to-day living at home because they are getting older or frailer, or because of the impact of a disability or illness. A service which provides practical or personal care for someone in their own home can help someone keep their independence.

Such services have a number of names, including home care, domiciliary care and care at home, but they all refer to a service where someone comes to your home on a regular basis to carry out those personal or household tasks that you are not able to do for yourself.

Personal care can include help with getting up and going to bed, bathing, dressing, meals and medication. Practical support may include help with housework, shopping and going out.

Care at home is provided through Social Services for people who have been assessed as having high levels of personal care needs.

Sometimes people only need care at home for a short time to get back on track after an illness or a stay in hospital. This sort of short-term care is provided by social care and health staff working together and will focus on helping you to do things for yourself so that you will be able to manage on your own again.

For people who are not eligible for support from Social Services, or who prefer to make their own arrangements, there are a number of domiciliary care agencies in the Swansea area which provide both personal care and practical support.


– Coming Out of Hospital

If the person you care for is in hospital you may be faced with important decisions. You may be considering taking on this caring role for the first time and don’t know what to expect. Or you may have already been caring for the person, but their needs have now increased or changed.

One important thing to remember is that it is your choice whether or not to take on a caring role. Think about the type and amount of support you are able to provide and what help you might need. For example, you may be able to help with shopping and meals but feel that you would both like someone else to help with personal care. It is important for you to consider how your caring role is likely to affect your life and well-being.


Managing Someone’s Affairs

Financial Assessment:

This form will be given to anyone in receipt of care or being assessed in need of care through social services, I.E. home care, day services, sitting services, respite, in a care home or living in supported living accommodation.

The form is only based on the person receiving the care, if both husband and wife are in receipt of care there will be 2 financial assessment forms to fill in.

If you see clients who live at home and are in receipt of care, and they do not wish to disclose their savings, they do not have to fill in the full form, they DO need to fill in the form till page five and sign the section not disclosing their financial details, I would advise they complete the last page too, the direct debit mandate. The Financial assessment team can take a long time to invoice clients with bills for care; if the mandate form is filled in they will complete a lot quicker avoiding the shock of a big care bill.


Power of Attorney:

There are two types of Power of Attorney:

  • Finance and Property
  • Health and Welfare

Both are Lasting Power of Attorney.

It is a legal document, nominates a person to make decisions a person’s behalf when they lose the ability to do so.

They do not have to be filled in by a solicitor, although advisable in some circumstances where a person’s finances are complex.

If a person has lost capacity you will need to go through court of protection, you will advise from a solicitor.

Current Fee is £82.

You can ring for forms 0300 456 0300, or go online: www.justice.gov.uk/forms/opg/request-lasting-power-of-attorney-forms and order over the internet.