Welcome to the Carer's Resource. If you require any further information you can contact us 01302 327800.
What is a Carer?
If you take care of a relative or friend who has a long-term illness or disability, you are a carer. A person may undertake caring responsibilities despite their age or relationship to the person they are caring for and not realise that they are in fact a carer (for example, a son looking after his mother).
Know Your Rights
Carers have specific rights set out by English law. These rights are in place to give carers the support and services they need to fulfil their caring role and to help maintain their own wellbeing. A carer has:
- A right to ask for an assessment - It is important you are properly supported by your Local Authority so that you don't have to cope on your own. For more information on the Carer's Assessment you can view our factsheet.
- A right to request flexible working - There are provisions set out in the 'Work & Families Act 2006' which give carers the right to request flexible working if they care for an adult relative or partner. The request has to be considered by your employer but if there is a recognised business reason for doing so, they are not obliged to accept it. You should discuss this with your employer in order to explore your options.
Changes to the Care Act
As of 1st April 2015, changes to the law surrounding social care and support for adults, came into effect. This law is known as the Care Act and is in place to improve care and support. The changes include:
- A minimum national threshold for eligibility for care and support
- A requirement for the Council to arrange care and support in the community (not in care homes) for a person who pays for their care, if requested
- Increased rights and help for carers: you can contact Carers Direct Helpline on 0300 123 1053 or the Adult Contact Team on 01302 737391 for more information
- Increased support for people who have difficulty in understanding the care and support assessment and have no family or friends to help with this
- Stronger arrangements to protect vulnerable adults from abuse
Caring for someone can have an impact on your finances for reasons such as reducing your hours at work, increased utility costs, paying for services, nutritional needs or having to give up work altogether. Below is some information on the financical support available to carers and those they care for.
- Carer's Allowance - This is non means-tested benefit and you may be eligible if you care for someone for more than 35 hours per week. There is other criteria to be met in order to qualify for Carer's Allowance, which is explained in our factsheet.
- Carer's Credit - This is not a benefit, it is a National Insurance Credit which helps carers to protect their future pension when they have low earnings or they are not working. Further information can be found on our factsheet.
- The Carer Premium - You will qualify for a Carer Premium if you or your partner are actually paid an amount of Carer's Allowance or have an underlying entitlement to Carer's Allowance (ie your entitlement to Carer's Allowance cannot be paid because of the overlapping benefit rule).
- Income Support - If you are 'regularly and substantially engaged in caring for another person' and either you are claiming Carer's Allowance or the person you are caring for gets a qualifying benefit, you may be entitled to claim Income Support. Further information about Income Support can be found on our factsheet.
There are also benefits available to those being cared for, depending on their age and circumstances. Below are some links to our factsheets which explain about the different benefits available and eligibility or you can view a complete list of our benefit factsheets here.
Grants and Trusts
You may find that you need to pay for services or buy aids and equipment for the person you are caring for. There are circumstances where you may be able to apply for a grant to help you pay for these additional costs. You can find information about the different grants available on our factsheet.
Disabled Facilities Grant
This is a grant provided by your Local Authority to help meet the cost of adapting a property for the needs of a disabled person. To apply for a grant you should get in touch with the Adult Contact Team at DMBC on 01302 737391 who will send you an application pack and arrange an assessment. You can find out further information on our factsheet.
Local Authorities have a duty to offer Direct Payments to those aged 16 or over and are a disabled person, a carer or have parental responsibility for a disabled child. Direct Payments allow someone who has been assessed as having eligible needs, to receive money to arrange and pay for services. You can contact the Direct Payment Support Team at Doncaster Council on 01302 736000 for further information or visit their website here.
Turn2us - National Charity which helps people in financial hardship gain access to welfare benefits, charitable grants and support services.
GOV.UK - Provides information on government services and benefits for carers and those they care for.
Money Advice Service - Free and impartial money advice including support available for carers.
Getting around with the person you care for can be a challenge. There are travel and mobility schemes available to help with accessing transport and getting concessions for yourself and the person you care for.
- Disabled Persons Railcard - This card entitles a disabled person and their carer or companion to 1/3 off rail fares. You can apply if you meet one of the qualifying criteria listed on the application form. You can apply online here or you can call DIAL on 01302 327800 and we will send an application form to you.
- Mobility Travel Pass - This pass entitles a disabled person to travel, free of charge, on all buses, trams and trains in South Yorkshire at any time. They are processed by Doncaster Council on behalf of South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive. To qualify for a mobility travel pass you must live in Doncaster and meet one of the conditions listed on the application form. If the disabled person recieves the high rate care component of Disability Living Allowance or the enhanced daily living component of Personal Independence Payment, a 'With Carer' pass can be requested which enables a carer or helper to travel for free. The form is available to download here or you can call DIAL on 01302 327800 and we will send an application form to you. More information about the Mobility Travel Pass can be found on our factsheet.
- Taxis - There are some locally based taxi companies who have wheelchair accessible taxis available, details of which can be found on our factsheet.
- The Blue Badge Scheme - This scheme provides an arrangement of parking concessions, enabling disabled people who travel as a driver or passenger, to park close to their destination. Online applications can be made at www.gov.uk. Further information about the Blue Badge Scheme and the qualifying criteria can be found on our factsheet.
- Road Tax Exemption - If a person is in receipt of the high rate mobility component of Disability Living Allowance, the enhanced mobility component of Personal Independence Payment, War Pensioners' Mobility Supplement or Armed Forces Independence Payment, they (or a person they nominate) can apply for exemption from Vehicle Excise Duty. You claim the exemption when you apply online for vehicle tax at www.gov.uk. Further information about Road Tax Exemption can be found on our factsheet.