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A new guide, released by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), explains how Personal Independence Payment (PIP) affects carers.

PIP began replacing the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) in April 2013 for disabled people aged 16 to 64.

Entitled ‘What PIP means for carers,’ the guide discusses Carer’s Allowance and Carer’s Credit.

The document explains that the ‘daily living’ component of PIP – both the standard and enhanced rate – is a qualifying benefit for Carer’s Allowance and Carer’s Credit.

For people providing at least 35 hours of care a week to someone who claims, or is going to claim, the independent living component of PIP, they might be eligible to claim Carer’s Allowance (provided they meet the other qualifying criteria).

The Government states that carers should not claim this allowance until the person they care for is awarded the daily living component. However, it emphasises that people need to claim Carer’s Allowance within three months of the PIP decision being made, else they could lose benefit.

For people who do not qualify for Carer’s Allowance, they might be eligible for Carer’s Credit.

Carer’s Credit, outlines DWP, is available for people who provide at least 20 hours of a care a week to somebody who claims, or is going to claim, the daily living component of PIP. It is a National Insurance credit that is designed to build entitlement to the basic State Pension and Additional State Pension.

It also helps ensure there are no gaps in carers’ National Insurance records.

For more information or to find out how to claim Carer’s Allowance, the Government encourages people to email cau.customer-services@dwp.gsi.gov.uk

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