The commons work and pensions committee would like to hear from you if you have been contacted by the DWP in connection with a carer’s allowance overpayment.
As we reported last month, the DWP has launched a campaign against carer’s allowance overpayments that will see more than a thousand carers prosecuted and 10,000 fined by the DWP.
Many of the overpayments have arisen because claimants were not aware that there was an earnings limit for people receiving carer’s allowance.
The work and pensions committee is clearly unimpressed with this assault on carers.
As they point out, there are 6.5 million unpaid carers in the UK who make a hugely valuable contribution to society.
Yet earning just £1 over the earnings threshold results in them losing 100% of their carer’s allowance.
Committee Member Ruth George MP said:
"Our health and social care systems would fall apart without the contribution of unpaid carers, who perform a selfless and invaluable role for at least 35 hours a week to qualify for the £64.80 carer’s allowance – that’s a maximum £1.85 an hour.
“When I worked with retail staff, we would often see someone get a small pay rise and inadvertently exceed the earnings threshold. It was bad enough when this was picked up at the end of the year and they had to find and pay back hundreds of pounds.
“When carers are only being informed of overpayments years later and potentially being taken to court for thousands of pounds, it is imperative for the Committee to look at the evidence and question whether Government is acting in the best interests not just of individuals, but of society and the wider economy."
The deadline for responses to the investigation is 22 December 2018.
You can find out more about the investigation by the committee and complete an online survey from the links on this page.