Pensions definitely deserve their place in the spotlight right now. Between people fighting to have full control over their money all the way up to people looking to maximize their savings, today is a great day to talk about pensions. This isn’t just any pool of money, of course; it represents years upon years of saving rather than spending, and it should be a pool of money respected by everyone. If you’re going to work hard all of your life, the very least that you can do is save for the future. But what if life takes a completely different turn? If you have to take care of sick family, you’re not going to have the same work record as someone that had the ability to keep working straight through.
The Government has now stepped in with a Carer’s credit, boosting the pension savings dramatically. But many carers haven’t taken advantage of the credit, which can add much-needed funds. The credit is paid out as long as you are looking after someone that has disability benefits due to illness or actual disability for at least half time (20 hours every week).
Most carers around the nation are women, well over two-thirds. The issue represents another piece on what women struggle with: juggling their own financial needs while taking care of everyone. The nurturing role of women has long held a sympathetic and nostalgic feel; after all, who doesn’t remember being taken care of by someone they cared for? But the reality is that the decision to step back and take care of someone else means that you may have some harder choices to make later on in retirement.
The credit is pretty easy to claim, and you have time to claim it. You can go directly to the HMRC website for more information, or there is a number to call as well.
Some people worry that they will look bad claiming so many credits. We get correspondence from readers that say that they know they qualify for something, but they don’t want to look like they’re living on the system. The truth is that your life has to be about making yourself more comfortable, rather than trying to keep up appearances. After all, it’s not like anyone’s going to know whether you claimed the credit or not. Good luck!