Hi, my name is L154! I put a claim into UC asking for backdated Carer Element — Scope | Disability forum
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Hi, my name is L154! I put a claim into UC asking for backdated Carer Element

L154 Community member Posts: 2 Listener
edited August 30 in Universal Credit (UC)
I’m wondering if anyone can help please. I put a claim into UC asking for backdated Carer Element on the basis that I was never informed of this benefit and my husband looks after me +35hours per week. We are not entitled to Carer Allowance because he works. When we first joined UC I had PIP Award, highest for both areas for 10 years and soon afterwards received ESA LCWRA. We requested help with any other benefits we could claim because we had never claimed before, they knew that my husband looked after me and my 2 children, at the time under 10 years were down as young carers. They kept saying carers element and carer allowance and we thought they were the same benefit, but knew we couldn’t get the allowance, UC told us that. They never mentioned to us about we could be entitled to carer element though. I requested several times help with the joint claim because we didn’t know what we were doing. I only realised after being in a FB Disability Group that we could have had the element part of UC starting back in 2019!  They have turned down the backdated claim stating it is because we didn’t tell them he was caring for me but we did but they confused us with calling it element and allowance for the same thing, we didn’t know there was 2 different benefits. Can they do that even though we asked for help and clearly didn’t get it? Thank you


  • bg844
    bg844 Community member Posts: 3,869 Disability Gamechanger
    edited August 29
    First of all, Facebook is the worst place you can ask for help. These 'benefits advisors' who moderate the groups aren't very good at what they do and quite often give some appalling advice. I just wanted to point this out for future reference.

    Is Carer's Element on your statement now? I wanted to ask to make sure it's in payment.

    UC can refuse to make a decision and it's not uncommon for this to happen with decisions exceeding 13 months. Back payments aren't always guaranteed anyway even for decisions under that 13 month mark. Technically speaking, you should inform UC straight away whenever there's a change to your circumstances.
  • L154
    L154 Community member Posts: 2 Listener

    thanks for your reply. Yes, I do not tend to heed advice from them very often, but I kept seeing care allowance and care element being brought up and I believed they were one of the same benefit. Even UC coaches call carers element, carers allowance. I got a reply yesterday, the one stating they won’t be back dating carers element, but then in the next paragraph he wrote “carers allowance will be paid via UC from July 2023 as per your change of circumstances. I replied saying “this is why you confused us and we thought both benefits were one of the same!”  I’ve asked for MR because I truly believe we have the right, UC were very quick to inform us we couldn’t have carers allowance. Why they told us that I don’t know as I’m now aware CA has nothing to do with UC. Looking back on journal entries dating back to 2019 UC were asked “can we claim carers as we couldn’t afford outside help and had been told not eligible for CA due to husband working. It was written in a journal entry by us “can we please get some advice, we have both always worked, we do not understand anything to do with the benefit system and it is also very confusing when you do find information online”. We couldn’t speak to CA as the Q for an app was very long, then COVID hit and it was like a large number of people, ourselves included, were just left to try to figure it out by ourselves. On one journal entry UC were told “can’t get carers allowance as husband works, he does care for his partner though, works full time because we couldn’t afford for him not to. Our children, at the time, aged 7&8 down as young carers too as they care for mum sometimes!  Mum on PIP, highest for both elements for 10 years and shortly after accepted into ESA LCWRA. Is there anything else that we could be eligible for as we are really struggling!?” We actually lost our house and became homeless, having to go to the council. UC reply “definitely not eligible for CA due to husband probably earning over the amount in salary, per week, to enable a claim!” That’s it!  Surely, one sentence more of “however, as CA has nothing to do with UC, let’s stop telling you you can’t have it because you can, in fact,  claim carers element, which is part of UC!”  Never told that and I think that’s completely irresponsible of them. We didn’t want a massive sit down meeting going over every single possible eligible benefit, all we wanted was help with UC and eligible benefits for that!
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 49,593 Disability Gamechanger
    This really does prove that they are not benefits advisors and shouldn't been seen as that. Though you would expect them to know that you could have claimed carers element as there's no earnings limit to this.

    As for any other benefits then unfortunately, UC has replaced all other benefits like Tax Credits, housing benefit etc etc and the only other one now would be council tax reduction, which needs to be claimed from your local Authority. Whether there's any entitlement to this will depend on your joint circumstances. There maybe no entitlement because your husband works.
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.


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