April benefits changes: what they mean for carers

carer with older person making cakes

The government has made a number of key benefits changes from April 2017. But do you know how they will affect you? 

Key changes that may affect carers

Benefits changes made from April 2017 include:

Benefits uprated - key benefits uprated (increased slightly) for 2017 include Carer's Allowance, Carer Premium, Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance and Personal Independence Payment - Carers UK has more information on these benefits: read more

Employment Support Allowance - from 1 April, the Employment Support Allowance (ESA) Work-Related Activity component and the limited capability for work element of Universal Credit will be abolished for new claimants

'Bedroom tax' rule change - 'bedroom tax’ rules have been changed to allow an additional room where a child or non-dependent adult requires overnight care from a non-resident carer(s), and where a couple are unable to share a bedroom due to health reasons

Carer's Allowance earnings limit increase - the Carer's Allowance earnings limit will increase to £116 per week. But with the planned increase in the National Living Wage, many carers may not see the benefit, according to Contact a Family: learn more

Changes to bereavement support - Bereavement Allowance, Bereavement Payment and Widowed Parent’s Allowance will be replaced by the new Bereavement Support Payment (BSP) for new claims

Family Element - people starting a family after April 2017 will no longer be eligible for the Family Element in tax credits (First Child Element for those claiming Universal Credit)  

Universal Credit: two child limit  - this means that families won't get additional money included in their Universal Credit claim for any third or subsequent child born after 6 April 2017

Universal Credit: changes to looking for work requirements for parents - requirements to look for work for parents with a youngest child of three or above for Universal Credit

Universal Credit: taper limit reduction - reduction in the taper rate from 65% to 63% (reduction in benefit for every pound you earn over the work allowance limit)

Carers UK has more information on the impact of these changes on carers. You can find a full timetable of changes on the Turn2Us website: learn more.

Get benefits advice for your situation

If you are concerned about how the above changes will affect you, it's important to get personalised benefits advice. Contact us for more information and advice, or get in touch with the Croydon Welfare Rights Team on 0800 731 5920.

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