What benefits am I entitled to?
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Jo1967Jo1967 Member Posts: 2 Listener
Hi all this is my first post and I am hopeful that someone can set me straight.  I am disabled, on ESA in the support group and on middle rate PIP for care and low rate for mobility. My 25 year old daughter lives at home with me and receives carers allowance.  She is also doing a Masters Degree.  She is looking at getting a part time job but we are both unsure how this will affect the household income, mainly Housing Benefit and Council Tax.  I have tried to find this information out from various sites but I think I must be very stupid as I don't understand a word of it.  Can anyone explain the rules in laymans terms please. This would be greatly appreciated.  Many thanks

Replies

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    edited August 2019
    HI,

    Is it your daughter that claims carers allowance for looking after you? If so does she study for more than 21 hours per week?

    Do carers allowance know she's a student?
    Proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice I have given to members here on the community.
  • April2018momApril2018mom Posts: 2,869 Member
    Hello!
    Who claims the benefit? You or your daughter. How much time does she spend studying? Have you contacted the DWP or not? 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello!
    Who claims the benefit? You or your daughter.
    A person can't claim carers allowance for their self.....
    Proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice I have given to members here on the community.
  • david235david235 Member Posts: 170 Pioneering
    As @poppy123456 says, do Carer's Allowance know the daughter is a student? Full-time students cannot normally claim Carer's Allowance - the underlying reason is one of public policy that students are normally expected to live on student finance, not benefits. For Carer's Allowance, only those students with less than 21 hours per week of study commitments, which includes individual study time, are eligible.


    Your PIP is unaffected by membership of the household as is any contributions based ESA. Unless I am missing something, your adult daughter's presence in the household does not affect any income-related ESA entitlement other than you will not be entitled to the Severe Disability Premium.

    The Housing Benefit situation is rather complex and really needs an advice service like CAB to check your entitlements in various scenarios. There is not a national scheme for Council Tax Reduction any more in England; the entitlement there depends on your local council's rules.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    edited August 2019
    Housing benefit is definitely not affected by any non dependent deductions because the person is receiving daily living PIP. This is set rules for all local councils. This means that there won't ever be any deductions for non dependents while a person is claiming daily living PIP. See link and scroll to the bottom. https://www.entitledto.co.uk/help/non-dependants

    Link here for carers allowance eligibility https://www.gov.uk/carers-allowance/eligibility


    Proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice I have given to members here on the community.
  • david235david235 Member Posts: 170 Pioneering
    Of course, @poppy123456 - the rules on those who are exempt from non-dependant deductions had slipped my mind. That simplifies the Housing Benefit side of things considerably, as it doesn't matter what money the daughter is receiving. As you rightly say, this is a national rule that councils cannot vary.

    The only scenario in which I can see the daughter's income affecting Housing Benefit entitlement is if the mother and daughter are joint tenants - though I do not propose to discuss that unlikely scenario any further.


    If I'm right about income-related ESA (if the original poster is getting it) and haven't missed something there, then it seems the issues here are:
    • whether the daughter is actually entitled to Carer's Allowance whilst she is studying - and if so how part-time work would affect that Carer's Allowance or any student finance she is receiving, and
    • how any part-time work would affect Council Tax Reduction, which depends on the council's rules now that there is no national scheme

    The current earnings disregard for Carer's Allowance is £120 per week; any earnings over that mean there is no entitlement to Carer's Allowance. However, it might be that the master's degree course has already extinguished entitlement to Carer's Allowance, especially if it is full-time - in which case there may already be a sizeable Carer's Allowance overpayment that the daughter owes back to DWP.

    To my mind, sorting out the effect of the daughter's study on her Carer's Allowance entitlement is the most urgent issue unless the daughter has fully declared her studies and has nevertheless been ruled eligible for Carer's Allowance.
  • Jo1967Jo1967 Member Posts: 2 Listener
    Hi again, I get ESA and PIP and my daughter claims Carers. She only at University 1 day a week as a Masters Degree has minimal contact time, its mostly done from home and/or placement. Carers do know she her situation. Hope this helps.
  • david235david235 Member Posts: 170 Pioneering
    Jo1967 said:
    She only at University 1 day a week as a Masters Degree has minimal contact time, its mostly done from home and/or placement. Carers do know she her situation. Hope this helps.

    It is not just the one day a week contact time that counts towards the 21 hours per week limit on study, but also likely the placement hours as well. The home-based study probably counts as unsupervised study; if so, it would not count towards the 21 hours.

    It is good to hear that the Carer's Allowance department know of your daughter's situation and have ruled she is still eligible for Carer's Allowance. That disposes of the concerns that @poppy123456 and I had about your daughter being a student and in receipt of Carer's Allowance.


    Your daughter should declare any income from part-time work to Carer's Allowance - but my understanding is that earnings below £120 per week are disregarded. Earnings above that threshold extinguish entitlement to Carer's Allowance.


    You'll need to check your council's rules - or enquire directly with them - about the effect of your daughter working part-time on Council Tax Reduction.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    edited August 2019
    I'm very surprised that carers allowance allow her to claim this despite only being in college for 1 day a week because studying at home will also include the 21 hours per week and the placement will be part of the course. She will needed to have shown that she's not expected to study more than 21 hours per week and that the course is part time, not full time.  Students usually claim a student loan.

    Anyway, she won't be able to earn anymore than £123 per week after deductions and if she earns more than this then she won't be entitled to carers allowance.

    As advised, your housing benefit isn't affected.

    Council tax, i'm assuming you don't claim the single person discount? even though your daughter is a student, for you to still qualify for this then she will need to be studying full time, as she's claiming carers allowance then it can't be full time.

    As for council tax reduction (which is different to single person discount) then you'll need to speak to your local council because all council are different.
    Proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice I have given to members here on the community.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    @david235 earnings for carers allowance was increased in April this year and is now £123 per week after deductions.

    Proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice I have given to members here on the community.
  • david235david235 Member Posts: 170 Pioneering
    @david235 earnings for carers allowance was increased in April this year and is now £123 per week after deductions.

    Thank you for that. The reference material I was using to check my memory must not have been updated to include the April 2019 uprating.

    I doubt any part-time student with carer responsibilities will be able to earn anything near £120 per week, but it is important that the information given is accurate. I apologise for any confusion over the amount.
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,652 Disability Gamechanger
    Welcome to the community @Jo1967, I hope you have been able to clarify this for you. Please do let us know if we can do anything else to help. :)
    Community Partner
    Scope

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