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How to apply for Carer Support Payment

You can apply for Carer Support Payment:

  • using the online form
  • on the phone
  • in person
  • by post

Before you apply

Learn about effects on other benefits

Carer Support Payment can affect the other benefits that you and the person you care for get. If you live with a partner, it could also affect their benefits.

Before you apply, find out how Carer Support Payment might affect other benefits.

Check if applications are open in your area

You can apply for Carer Support Payment now if you live in:

  • Dundee City

  • Perth and Kinross
  • the Western Isles

If you live anywhere else, you can apply for Carer Support Payment when applications open in your area. Or you can apply now for Carer's Allowance from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). Find out more about Carer's Allowance at GOV.UK.
Check if you can apply

What you need to apply

Before you apply, make sure you have your:

  • National Insurance number
  • bank or building society details

You also need details of the person you care for, including their:

  • date of birth and address 
  • National Insurance number if they’re 16 or over (this information is optional but can speed up your application)
  • Child Reference Number if they’re under 16

If you’re self-employed, you’ll need to send your self-assessment tax return or monthly accounts. You can do this when you apply or you can send them later.

If you’re studying at school or college, you might need to send details of your course.

Backdating your payment

Backdating for up to 3 months

When you apply, you can ask Social Security Scotland to backdate your Carer Support Payment for up to 3 months. This means you may be awarded payments starting from a date that's up to 3 months ago.

You can only ask to do this if you’ve provided care for 35 hours or more a week during that time.

Backdating for more than 3 months

Social Security Scotland may be able to backdate your Carer Support Payment for more than 3 months if both these statements apply to the person you provide care for:

  • they were awarded their disability benefit in the last 3 months
  • their disability award was backdated to a start date more than 3 months ago

In this circumstance, Social Security Scotland can award you Carer Support Payment starting from the date the disability benefit award was backdated to. You need to have provided care for 35 hours or more a week from that date.

If this applies to you, and you want to backdate your Carer Support Payment for more than 3 months, you need to apply on the phone. Contact Social Security Scotland.

When you cannot backdate for more than 3 months

Normally, you cannot backdate for more than 3 months if you:

  • are a full-time student
  • have spent more than 1 of the last 3 years outside the UK

If you want to backdate for more than 3 months and you're not sure if you’ll be allowed to, contact Social Security Scotland.

How backdating can affect your other benefits

If you get income-related benefits, Carer Support Payment can reduce the amount you’ll get from those benefits. If you get a backdated award of Carer Support Payment, this may mean you’re overpaid for those other benefits during that backdating period.

You may need to pay the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) back for those overpayments. To avoid this, Social Security Scotland can work with DWP to make sure you’re paid the correct amounts for your income-related benefits and Carer Support Payment. If you get overpaid for Universal Credit, DWP would recover these overpayments by reducing your future payments.

You’ll usually be better off overall if you get Carer Support Payment and your income-related benefits. And, if you get Carer Support Payment, you’ll also get Carer's Allowance Supplement.

Learn more about effects on other benefits.

Apply online

Follow these steps:

  1. Check if you can apply. We'll tell you if Carer Support Payment is available in your area.
  2. Register or sign in with myaccount.

You can save your application as you go, so you can come back to it when it suits you.

Check if you can apply

Apply on the phone

Call Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222 to apply on the phone.  

Their opening times are Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm.  

If you need to contact Social Security Scotland from outside the UK, call +44 (0)138 2931 000. This call is not free but you can ask Social Security Scotland to call you back. Check with your phone provider for details of charges.  

Apply in British Sign Language

If you’re a British Sign Language user, you can video call Social Security Scotland using the Contact Scotland BSL app.

Apply in other languages

You can call Social Security Scotland and ask for an interpreter in over 100 languages. They can connect you to an interpreter straight away, or you can book a call in advance.

Apply by post

If you want to fill in a paper form you can:

The address to send your application to is shown at the end of the form.  

You can get a large print paper form by contacting Social Security Scotland.

Apply in person

A client support adviser from Social Security Scotland can help you apply. They can meet you:

  • at your home
  • at a venue in your local community
  • over the phone
  • through a video call

Learn more about how a client support adviser can help you apply.

Questions you'll be asked

You can download the paper form to see the questions you’ll be asked when applying for Carer Support Payment.

Find out how Social Security Scotland uses your data.

Supporting information

Social Security Scotland might ask you to send them supporting information to confirm what you tell them in your application form.

They might need to see documents that show:

  • how much you earn
  • where you live
  • your UK immigration status if you are not a British citizen
  • if you've spent time outside the UK, Ireland, Channel Islands or Isle of Man in the last 12 months
  • you have a genuine and sufficient link to Scotland
  • if you or a family member are in the UK armed forces or Civil Service

If you have expenses that could be taken off your earnings, Social Security Scotland will contact you for supporting information about these. This could be for:

  • work-related expenses
  • personal expenses like personal pension contributions
  • caring costs if you pay for care while you work

If you’re an employee

You will not need to send documents showing how much you earn. Social Security Scotland will get this information from HMRC.

If you’re self-employed

If you’ve been trading for more than 12 months, you’ll need to send your most recent finalised accounts or self-assessment tax return.

If you’ve been trading for less than 12 months, you’ll need to send your monthly income and expenses.

Sending documents

You can send documents:

  • online
  • by post

Find out more about how to send documents.

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