The Carer's Assistance (Carer Support Payment) (Scotland) Draft Regulations 2023: policy note

This instrument sets out the rules and eligibility criteria for The Carer’s Assistance (Carer Support Payment) (Scotland) Draft Regulations 2023 and includes provision for transfer of benefits for individuals who live in Scotland and receive CA to Social Security Scotland and Carer Support Payment.


Between 28 February 2022 and 23 May 2022, the Scottish Government undertook a public consultation on how our replacement benefit for Carer's Allowance could work better for carers, from launch, and in future. The consultation received around 200 responses from individuals and stakeholder organisations. A full list of those consulted and who agreed to the release of this information is attached to the consultation report published on the Scottish Government website. During the consultation period officials attended Carers Scotland's Annual Carers Summit and nine engagement events were undertaken to hear from a wide and diverse range of carers. Specific research was also carried out with Social Security Scotland Experience Panels, with 242 members responding to a survey, and 16 follow up interviews. This took place between March and July 2022. Following the consultation period, a series of workshops to take feedback on proposals in light of the consultation responses were held with the Carer Benefits Advisory Group (CBAG)[2].

An analysis of the responses to the consultation was published on 8 November[3]. A summary report[4] from the research with experience panel members was published on 9 November 2022. The Scottish Government will publish a response to the public consultation in March 2023.

Respondents were broadly supportive of the policy proposals, and general, the approach outlined in the consultation paper was perceived to be more sympathetic, flexible, and person-centred. Respondents were supportive of aligning the approach on residence and re-determinations and appeals with the disability benefits, and on the use of 'nil rating' as a way to prevent overpayments and reduce the need for carers to re-apply for support after temporary breaks in entitlement. The response to the consultation has informed the development of policy for Carer Support Payment, including the strong support for:

  • the proposal to provide an improved service to carers, joining up with wider services to help carers access clear information on the support available to them has guided policy development. There will be a strong focus on providing information and signposting from launch, linking carers to other services at key moments of transition such as the start or end of a caring role, and supporting carers to access opportunities outside of caring, should they wish to do so; and
  • the proposal to reduce the education restriction, with work ongoing to develop the detail of this policy and impact when, in future, this change can be made to ensure those in full time advanced education can access Carer Support Payment.

Case transfer

In January and February 2019, two surveys regarding the case transfer process for disability assistance were sent out to Experience Panel members. 404 and 559 responses were received respectively. A series of individual and group interviews were also conducted. Results from both surveys and the interviews were published in 2019. These surveys confirmed that of most importance to panel members was that they continue to receive the correct payment at the correct time.

Additionally, the Scottish Government has been working with relevant stakeholders including the Disability and Carer Benefits Expert Advisory Group (DACBEAG), to develop and receive advice on case transfer principles and the development of the approach to case transfer. Scottish Government officials presented to DACBEAG members on proposed case transfer policy on 3 November 2022, highlighting issues specific to Carer's Allowance case transfer, such as payment cycles, earnings and breaks in care. DACBEAG's advice of 9 December 2022 provided recommendations in relation to payment cycles and earnings, and this advice has been used in developing the policy for these areas.



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