What if I care for someone or have children?
Caring for someone
You can get the carer element of Universal Credit (UC) if you care for someone who needs a lot of support – you must care for him or her for 35 hours or more a week and the person you care for must also be getting:
- Attendance Allowance,
- Personal Independence Payment, standard or enhanced daily living component,
- Disability Living Allowance, high or middle rate care component.
If someone has more than one carer, only one of them can get the carer element and they can get up to £160.20 a month.
If you are a couple and both of you care for two or more different people, you could both get an additional carer element, but you can’t get the carer element, Limited Capability for Work (LCW) and Limited Capability for Work Related Activity (LCWRA) elements at the same time. If you are entitled to both, you will get whichever is more.
What if I have children?
You can get the child element if you have children, which has two rates:
- A higher rate for the child, and
- A lower rate for any other children.
For children born after 6 April 2017, the higher rate will not be available anymore. You will get the lower rate for up to two children in your family, but there are some exceptions to this and you should speak to a welfare adviser if you need more information.
First child - £277.08
Other children - £231.67
You can get money for each disabled child or qualifying young person you are responsible for. This is called the disabled child element.
You can get money for each disabled child or qualifying young person you are responsible for. This is called the disabled child element
You will get the higher rate of £392.08 each month if your child is entitled to:
- High rate care component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA), or
- The enhanced daily living component of Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
You will also get this amount if you care for a blind child.
If your child gets any other rate of DLA or PIP, you will get £126.11 each month.
If you are in paid work, you may be able to get help with up to 85% of your childcare costs, with the maximum amounts being:
- One child – up to £646.35 each month
- Two or more children – up to £1,108.04 each month
There are some rules around getting this element:
- The childcare costs must be for a child under 16 years old, or before 1st September following their 16th birthday,
- The childcare must help you to start working or stay working,
- You must have a paid job or be about to start a paid job before the start of the next UC assessment period,
- If you are a couple, your partner must also be:
- In paid work or have a limited capability for work, or
- Be a full-time carer or be away from your home for a short time.
You will only get help with childcare from a registered childminder, school or local authority on school premises out of school hours
You will only get help with childcare from a registered childminder, school or local authority on school premises out of school hours. You cannot claim this element to pay family or friends to mind your child unless they are registered.
You must tell the DWP how much your childcare costs are every month.
- What is Universal Credit?
- How much can I get?
- Working or studying
- What if I care for someone or have children?
- What about my housing costs?
- Income, savings and property
- Will the benefit cap affect me?
- Universal Credit payments
- The claimant commitment
- Appeal a decision
- When to claim
- Next steps