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Background information on the new credit scheme for carers

Home Responsibilities Protection (HRP) will be replaced by weekly credits for parents and carers. Carers caring for a total of 20 hours per week or more will be able to apply for Carer’s Credit to protect their State Pension – both the basic and State Second Pension. This will help in situations where carers currently struggle to get their State Pensions protected, for example:

  1. Carers caring for 20 hours or more per week (only those caring for 35 hours or more qualify before April 2010).
  2. Carers looking after someone who refuses to claim disability benefits or who finds it extremely difficult because of their condition. This would benefit people caring for people with mental illness, for example.
  3. Where more than one carer is looking after someone who is severely disabled – only one can claim Carers’s Allowance (but from April 2010 the other will be able to claim Carer’s Credit).
  4. Carers who are looking after several people but cannot claim Carer’s Allowance because they do not care for any one of them for 35 hours. After April 2010 people in these situations will qualify for Carer’s Credit. To claim the Carer’s Credit carers must be caring for 20 hours or more a week for someone who is either:
  • in receipt of a qualifying benefit (any rate of Attendance Allowance or Constant Attendance Allowance, middle or highest DLA care component),
  • or where there is no qualifying benefit, has a signed certificate from a health or social care professional to confirm that the level of care being provided is appropriate (as in 2. above).

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