What are Carer’s Credits?
Carer Credits count towards your National Insurance (NI) record. They can help you qualify for the State Pension. If you are caring for someone with a mental health condition, you may get Carer Credits.
How do I know if I qualify for Carer Credits?
You don’t pay National Insurance contributions when you aren’t working. This can prevent you from receiving a State Pension when you reach your State Pension age.
Carer Credits will help cover gaps in your National Insurance record and help you to qualify for your State Pension. If you are a mental health carer, you will be eligible for Carer Credits if:
- You are 16 years old or over.
- You are under the State Pension age (you can check your State Pension Age here).
- You care for someone more than 20 hours a week.
- You don’t already get Carer’s Allowance (Carer Credits are included with Carer Allowance).
- You don’t already get Child Benefit for a child under the age of 12 (Carer Credits are automatically included) and,
- The person you care for claims:
- Personal Independence Payment (PIP) standard or enhanced daily living component.
- Disability Living Allowance (DLA) middle or higher rate.
- Attendance Allowance or,
- Constant Attendance Allowance.
- Armed Forces Independence Payment.
What if the person I care for doesn’t receive any of these benefits?
You can still get Carer Credits if a qualified health or social professional (e.g. AMHP or Social Worker) confirms you are providing enough care.
You can do this by completing the ‘Carer’s Credit Care Certificate’ (Form CC1 HSCP 12/19) when applying for Carer Credit and getting the health or social professional to complete and sign their section.
How do I apply for Carer Credits?
To apply for Carer Credits, you will need to:
- Download and fill in the Carer’s Credit Application Form (Form CC1 12/19).
Once you have completed the form, you should post it to the address detailed on the form.
Don’t forget to include the Carer’s Credit Certificate if you need a health or social care professional to confirm you are providing enough care.
How much money is Carer Credits?
Carer Credits are paid directly towards your National Insurance record. Therefore, your benefit claim should tell you how much is being paid towards your National Insurance.
What happens if I take a break from caring?
You can still take a break and receive Carer Credits. You can get Carer’s Credit for up to 12 weeks in a row if you take a break from caring. You need to inform the DWP if you take a break for longer than 12 weeks.
Taking a break can include:
- Going on a short holiday.
- The person you care for goes into hospital.
- You go into hospital.
You should inform the DWP if you go into hospital as it can affect your Carer’s Allowance.