HC Deb 28 May 2004 vol 422 cc78-9W
Dr. Palmer

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will increase the amount which carers are allowed to earn without affecting their benefit. [177325]

Maria Eagle

We want to encourage carers to combine work and caring where possible. Carers are able to earn £79 a week, after allowable expenses. These expenses can include tax, national insurance contributions and half of the contributions to an occupational pension scheme. as, in some cases, help with cost of substitute care. It is therefore possible for a carer to earn well in excess of £79 per week and be entitled to carer's allowance. The earnings limit moves each year in line with the lower earnings limit for national insurance purposes.