Carer's Allowance

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 10th March 2021.

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Photo of Paul Maynard Paul Maynard Conservative, Blackpool North and Cleveleys

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will uprate the earnings limit for claiming carers allowance in line with the minimum wage.

Photo of Paul Maynard Paul Maynard Conservative, Blackpool North and Cleveleys

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many unpaid carers lost eligibility for carer's allowance as a result of increased minimum wage payments in the 2019-20 financial year.

Photo of Paul Maynard Paul Maynard Conservative, Blackpool North and Cleveleys

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many unpaid carers lost eligibility for carer's allowance as a result of increased minimum wage payments in the 2019-20 financial year.

Photo of Justin Tomlinson Justin Tomlinson The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions

The Carer’s Allowance earnings limit is not linked to the number of hours worked or the level of “minimum wage” payments. Therefore, the department does not routinely collect information on whether those claiming Carer’s Allowance are being paid at those levels and so the information requested is not available.

The earnings limit is set at a level that aims to encourage those who give up full time work in order to undertake caring responsibilities to maintain a link with the labour market through some part time work. The Carer’s Allowance weekly earnings limit has increased by nearly a third since 2010 (from £100 to £128 net earnings per week), reflecting an increase in average earnings in recent years. These increases have helped ensure that the earnings limit has maintained its value.

The department is currently undertaking research which will touch on carers employment and potential barriers to them working. We will look at the findings from the research and other evidence and arguments with an open mind, and would consider changes to the way the earnings limit is calculated if they were deemed to be necessary and affordable.

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