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Attendance Allowance / Pip : Paid By The Caree To The Family Carer ?

WorksopChrisWorksopChris Member Posts: 28 Connected
edited May 2018 in PIP, DLA and AA
Straight off the Carers UK forum... an conundrum ?

Posted on here to see if this " issue " is , indeed , a greyer than the usual grey area.

Yet another grey area that has no legal answer ... so far ... over 10 sources checked ... none specify what a careee can or cannot do with these monies.

Many readers carees will be in receipt of AA ( If over state retirement age ) and PIP ( New money benefit for those under the state retirement age ).

Both benefits are paid to the caree for use in " Obtaining additional care support " ... confirmed by numerous sources including the Government's own site !!!

After rereading several threads , a fair number of readers assume that these monies can be safely passed over from the caree to the carer ... as additional income to the carer ... almost to a carer , informally.

During my time as a lone carer , all monies coming in to my caree and myself went into one pot , and all expenses paid out of the same pot ... a partnership arrangement which is exactly the true state of affairs in my caring situation.

That arrangement would have had all agencies screaming " You can't do that , the system wouldn't cope ! "

Question ... and considering the grey area exposed when examing Direct Patments and the use of family carers , do any readers actually declare payments received through AA / PIP on their tax returns ?

Direct payments thread :

https://www.carersuk.org/forum/support- ... care-30902

Would receiving AA / PIP originated monies also impact on that carer's current range of benefits ... including those juggling working with caring ?

If DP's are paid to the caree on the basis that they will NOT " Employ " family carers ... thus changing the caree / carer relationship to one of employee / employer ... should the same criteria apply with AA / PIP ?

Obviously , most readers will ignore this deduction and carry on whatever arrangement regardless ... I would second that practice BUT ... there is a question mark however valid which is NOT covered by law.

Scaremongering or not ... this is a grey area ... just how " Grey " is it ?


  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,537 Disability Gamechanger
    There’s no grey area here. Just a confusion of terms. 

    Direct payments are nothing to do with DLA or PIP. There’s no analogy to be drawn.

    Caree is a confusing term. Claimant is the word.

    A claimant can, regardless of media scare stories and political assertions, spend their disability benefits as they wish.

    Can they pay a carer? Yes, absolutely. Is it wise to do so? That depends entirely on the financial circumstances of the carer. Different benefits have different rules. 
  • WorksopChrisWorksopChris Member Posts: 28 Connected
    There IS a direct connection between the use of Direct Payments to pay a family member and the use of either AA or PIP to do the same.

    Both change the relationship between the carer and caree ... as confirmed by law .... to one of employer and employee ... the very thing that opens up a whole hornets nest.

    In CarerLand , a family carer cares for their caree.

    With 6.5 million+ carers , that implies a minimum of 6.5+ million carees needing care alone.

    That's the " Grey area " that both carers and their carees need to have clarfied ... what is allowed and what isn't !
  • WorksopChrisWorksopChris Member Posts: 28 Connected
    I would add that a couple of cases involving powers of attorney ( Squabbling siblings ) and use of monies paid out the caree ... and an LA's investigation into monies gifted over the years by a caree ... have prompted the investigation into this Issue.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,537 Disability Gamechanger
    Nope, direct payments establish a legal relationship. Payment of benefits do not. Please cite the specific case to which you refer on the latter point. 
  • WorksopChrisWorksopChris Member Posts: 28 Connected
    That is precisely it ... there is no legal guidance on the use of monies received from AA / PIP to " Pay " a family carer ... in practice , many carees may hand some / all of these monies over to the family carer informally.

    Even gifting these monies has knock on effects for the carer.

    Consider a caree , in receipt of Direct Payments and , for once , being told that these monies cannot be used to employ a family carer to care.

    At the same time , said caree receives monies from AA / PIP which is intended to help support that caree by buying in support services ( Government web site ) ... nowhere does if it cover the situation of that caree merely handing over those monies to the carer.

    It would be somewhat inconsistent if one Goverment agency hands over monies with strings attached but the other doesn;t when both sets of payment are essential meant for the same purpose ?

    I have approached this Issue from the carer's perspective as it could impact on hundreds of thousands IF it is demned that AA / PIP monies cannot go the family carer.

    No case law exists , nor do the conditions attached to AA / PIP either preclude or exclude the family carer receiving these monies ... and the potential knock on effect with other agencies.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,537 Disability Gamechanger
    edited May 2018
    Forgive my impatience but, once more with feeling then...

    1) There is no equivalence between direct payments and social security benefits. The initial mistake is in persisting in thinking that there is. Two different things with two entirely different legal frameworks. 

    2) It’s an assumption of yours only that many hand disability benefits over to their carers. That is an incorrect assumption for several reasons. 

    a) many carers simply claim Carers Allowance.
    b) many know that receiving an informal income, regardless of intent/purpose, will impact their own benefit income and perhaps even threaten their own disability benefits so, rather than have a problem if brought to light, they steer well clear.
    c) where a disabled person is vulnerable in some way or perhaps has an appointee then potential questions of financial abuse can arise if such an arrangement comes to light.
    d) many carers are in employment and don’t need such an arrangement.

    Do some people hand over the money? Yes. Are they statistically significant? I doubt it.

    3) Your initial post quotes “ten sources checked” and your assertion that benefits are paid to the claimant for use in “obtaining additional care support”. Sadly the worst thing you can do is look at government web sites for accurate information. I’ve no idea where your quote comes from but I am happy to put on record that it’s tosh. 

    The line that disability benefits should be spent on care is as old as some of those benefits. It’s peddled by ministers and others because, for want of a better more eloquent way of putting it, what the heck else could they say? 

    “Here is a social security benefit that you can use on everyday items to bring your below poverty line means-tested income slightly closer to acceptable”?

    It’s a line peddled to keep their voters happy. No more. No less.

    Ministers will always peddle the line as to what it’s for. Recipients will tell a very different and varied story but let’s just stick to the law. There is nothing in any Act which compels the recipient to spend disability benefits on care of any kind. Equally there is nothing in any of the supporting secondary legislation (the regulations) nor national decision making guidance nor any case law. 

    4) Putting money into “the same pot” by the way. One of the most ill-advised things you could possibly do where benefits are concerned. The mess it leaves in terms of legal v beneficial ownership is horrendous and entirely predictable.

    To sum up then...

    Your assumption that direct payments and disability benefits have an equivalence because both must, one way or another, be spent on care or support is wholly incorrect.

    To answer your specific questions:

    I doubt any carer declares receipt of any element of another persons disability benefits for tax purposes for all the reasons above. 

    Is it a grey area? Not at all. If it happens the consequences depend on individual circumstances but are clearly prescribed. 

    Would such a transfer establish a legal relationship? No. 

    Should it? No.

    Could it impact on the benefits of the carer? Yes, albeit that how depends entirely on individual circumstances.
  • WorksopChrisWorksopChris Member Posts: 28 Connected
    Thanks Mike ... some interesting thoughts.

    I can do little more other than to post your reply within the thread on Carers UK ... sit back ... and await any further comments from the readers ... who are mainly carers.
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,537 Disability Gamechanger
    I don’t think so. You would require my consent to do that and I am not giving it. I have no desire to be quoted out of context. 
  • WorksopChrisWorksopChris Member Posts: 28 Connected
    No problem ... URL of this thread is available unfer the Carers UK thread.

    If any readers from Carers UK want to read this thread , the opportunity is there.
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