Warning as scammers target £500 support for unpaid carers

The Welsh Government is urging residents who are unpaid carers to be alert for a new scam.

Within days of Welsh Government announcing that more than 57,000 unpaid carers across Wales are to receive a £500 support payment, some residents have reported being contacted by individuals impersonating council officers who have asked for confidential banking details in order to process the payment.

This is a scam – while full details of the scheme have not yet been confirmed, the payment is targeted at carers who already claim Carer’s Allowance, and carers must also register in order to receive the payment.

On no account should anyone hand over their banking details or any other confidential information to anyone who telephones, emails or cold-calls them with such demands.

The payment is intended to recognise the financial and emotional hardship that many unpaid carers have experienced, and is available to those who are in receipt of Carer’s Allowance on 31 March 2022.

An unpaid carer is someone who cares for a partner, relative or friend who has an illness of disability. Carers Allowance is paid to people caring for more than 35 hours a week who care for someone receiving specific benefits, and who earn no more than £128 a week. 

The payment is being launched by Welsh Government after a survey of more than 1,500 unpaid carers found that nearly half had to use their personal savings and give up work or study to care, while more than half had to give up on hobbies or personal interests because of their caring role.

The payment is intended to help unpaid carers cope with increased living costs and the fact that many will be caring for individuals with complex needs who require warm homes, specialist medical equipment and certain foods.

Welsh Government will be publicising full details on how and when unpaid carers will be able to register for the additional payment, and further information will be available very soon.