For Families and Carers : Income Support

Income Support (IS) is the safety net of the benefits system. It can be paid on its own, or as a top up with other benefits, or on top of earnings from part-time work.

The rules about who can claim Income Support have changed. From 27 October 2008, almost everyone with Down’s syndrome who was on Income Support has been transferred to Employment and Support Allowance.  However, if you are still on Incapacity Benefit or Severe Disablement Allowance, and have been unable to work since 30 December 2009, and get Income Support, you can continue to get Income Support.

Only certain groups of people can now claim Income Support.  You can claim if you are a carer, or a lone parent with a child under 5, or pregnant.  It is means-tested and the amount you get will depend on your circumstances.  You can do a limited amount of work while on Income Support, but your earnings are taken into account.

For information, go to GOV.UK’s Income Support section, or look at Disability Rights UK’s Income Support factsheet.