Scottish government confirms plans to introduce new carer support payment to replace Carer’s Allowance

2 mins read

Wednesday 29 March 2023

Tags: Scottish Carers Assistance, Carers Allowance in Scotland

The Scottish Government have made clear that when they introduce a new carer support payment to replace Carer’s Allowance, they will initially keep the main qualifying rules broadly similar.

This will make the process of transferring existing Carer’s Allowance claimants onto the new Scottish benefit more straightforward.

The new benefit will be initially introduced as a pilot scheme at the end of 2023, before being launched across Scotland in spring 2024.

While most of the qualifying rules for the new benefit will mirror Carer’s Allowance rules, there will be two main changes introduced from the start of the pilot scheme.

These are:

  • Changing the education rules so that carers in full-time education can receive the carer support payment;
  • Amending the ‘past presence test’ so that carers will normally only need to have been present in the UK for 26 weeks out of the previous year in order to claim.  

Once the Scottish Government has completed the transfer of all Carer’s Allowance claimants in Scotland onto the new carer support payment, it intends to make a number of other changes to the rules. These will include:

  • Increasing the ‘run on’ of benefit after a cared-for person dies from eight to 12 weeks;
  • Introducing an extra amount to be paid where a carer looks after more than one severely disabled person. Known as the carer’s additional person payment, this will be £10 per week for each additional person a carer is providing at least 20 hours of care to;
  • Providing temporary financial assistance known as ‘short-term assistance’ in some situations where a carer support payment decision is being challenged, or where the cared-for person is challenging a decision to stop or reduce their disability benefit.

At this point in time the Scottish Government has not committed itself to increasing the earnings limit.

For more details see the Scottish Government’s response to the Scottish Carers Assistance consultation.