Income Support and Tax Credits

You may be able to get Income Support and tax credits if you have a low income. Not all carers can claim them but check if you, or the person you care for, qualify.
 
Use the Turn2us benefits calculator to see what help you could get.

Income Support

Income Support is a benefit for people who have a low income. It can be your main source of income or can top up other income, such as Carers Allowance.
 
Not all carers can claim Income Support but you can apply if you:
 
  • are between 16 and “Pension Credit age
  • have no or a low income, and less than £16,000 savings
  • work less than 16 hours a week
  • are pregnant, a carer, or a lone parent with a child under 5. You may also be able to apply if you are unable to work because you’re sick or disabled, and
  • live in England, Wales or Scotland. If you live in Northern Ireland there are different rules, visit Income Support on nidirect to find out more.
The person you care for may be able to apply for Income Support if this describes them.
 
Find out about eligibility on the Gov.uk website.  
 
How much is it?
 
The amount you will be paid depends on your income, savings, age and who you live with.  Your partner’s working hours, income and savings will be taken into account.
 
See what you’ll get on the Gov.uk website for more information about the basic payment (personal allowance) and extra payments (premiums)
 
Use the Turn2us benefits calculator to see what you qualify for.
 
How to apply
 
To make a new claim call Jobcentre Plus - new claims: 0800 055 6688 (textphone: 0800 023 4888). There is also a Welsh language line: 0800 012 1888. Your call will be free, even if you call from a mobile phone.
 
You can apply by post by sending a claim form to your local Jobcentre Plus.
Visit how to claim or change a claim on the Gov.uk website for more ways to apply.

Tax credits

If you have a low income you may be able to claim tax credits to top up the money you have coming in.
 
Not all carers can claim them but check if you, or the person you care for, qualify.
 
Working Tax Credits and Child Tax Credits are both available across the UK (England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland).
 
If you get Carers Allowance your Working Tax Credit or Child Tax Credit may be reduced. Contact the Tax Credit Helpline: 0345 300 3900 (textphone: 0345 300 3909) to check.
 
There are likely to be changes to tax credits in the future. If you already claim tax credits you don’t need to do anything as you will be contacted directly if a change is going to affect you.  Any changes will also be explained here and on other websites including Gov.uk and Citizens Advice.

Working Tax Credit

If you work and you have a low income you may be able to get Working Tax Credit. You don’t need to have children to be able to claim this.
 
Not all carers can claim Working Tax Credit but you can apply if you are:
 
  • aged 16 to 24 and have a child or a qualifying disability
  • 25 or over, with or without children
  • work a certain number of hours a week
  • get paid for the work you do 
  • have an income below a certain level
The person you care for may be able to apply for Working Tax Credit if this describes them.
 
Find out about eligibility for Working Tax Credit on the Gov.uk website.
 
The amount you will get will depend on your personal circumstances. You can also use the tax credits calculator to work out how much you could get.
 
If you get Carers Allowance your Working Tax Credit may be reduced. Contact the Tax Credit Helpline: 0345 300 3900 (textphone: 0345 300 3909) to check.  
To apply for Working Tax Credit call the Tax Credit Helpline: 0345 300 3900 (textphone: 0345 300 3909).  

Child Tax Credit

If you have a low income and are responsible for one or more children you might be able to get Child Tax Credit. Find out more about Child Tax Credit.

Universal Credit

Universal Credit is being introduced across the UK and will eventually replace Income Support and tax credits. You might be able to claim it but it depends on where you live and your personal circumstances.
 
If you already claim benefits you don’t need to do anything.
 
Find out more about Universal Credit on the Gov.uk website.