Personnel Today’s tax breaks for carers campaign
Personnel Today is supporting an employer-led campaign to introduce tax breaks for employees who care for older relatives. As a part of the campaign Personnel Today is asking HR professionals to sign our petition to urge the government to include tax breaks for carers in its next comprehensive spending review, to be announced in Spring 2007.
What is a carer?
In the Work and Families Act 2006, the government defines a carer as an employee who is, or expects to be, caring for an adult who:
· Is married to, or the partner or civil partner of the employee; or
· Is a relative of the employee; or
· Falls into neither category, but lives at the same address as the employee
What is the tax breaks for carers campaign?
A coalition of employers and campaign groups including BT, Ford, HSBC, Nationwide, John Lewis, Counsel and Care, Working Families, Carers UK and the Princess Royal Trust for Carers is urging the government to introduce a tax break scheme for workers who care for elderly relatives.
How would tax breaks work?
The campaign proposes a system similar to the existing childcare voucher scheme. Through the scheme, employers would be able to provide a benefit in kind to their employees through the provision of vouchers capable of being redeemed only for qualifying care. This benefit would be exempt form both National Insurance contributions (primary and secondary) and PAYE. In addition, the administrative costs incurred by employers in supporting the scheme should be exempt from any PAYE or National Insurance liabilities.
What is Personnel Today’s involvement?
Personnel Today supports the campaign and believes that, as with childcare vouchers, a voucher scheme will help carers of elders to better manage their caring responsibilities, enabling an increasing number of workers who care to balance both work and caring responsibilities. This is an issue that directly affects employers and will continue to do as a result of demographic change. Personnel Today is asking HR professional to sign our petition to support a voucher scheme for carers.
How can I support the campaign?
Sign Personnel Today’s tax breaks for carers petition. A large number of HR professionals have already signed the petition and we have received support from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and the Public Sector People Managers’ Association.
See who has signed Personnel Today’s tax breaks for carers petition.
What happens next?
Personnel Today will be presenting the petition to the government to coincide with the Department for Trade and Industry-supported Where next for work-life balance? conference.
10 facts about carers
1 One in eight adults is a carer – about six million people.
2 Carers save the economy £57bn per year, an average of £10,000 per carer.
3 More than three million people juggle care with work.
4 The main carer’s benefit is £45 for a minimum of 35 hours, equivalent to £1.26 per hour.
5 1.25 million people provide more than 50 hours of care per week.
6 People providing high levels of care are twice as likely to be permanently sick or disabled.
7 More than one million people care for more than one person
8 58% of carers are women and 42% are men.
9 By 2037, the number of carers could have increased to nine million.
10 Every year over two million people become carers.
Source: Carers UK
More on carers
Carers in the news
Setting out the business case for caring for the UK’s carers.
Stephen Burke, chief executive of Counsel and Care explains why supporting carers in the workplace makes good business sense.
Case study of how HSBC bank helps carers.
Conservative leader David Cameron calls for tax relief for workers with caring responsibilities.
Carers of adults given a right to request flexible working.
Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers launches campaign to remove limits on the amount retail staff who care for others can earn.
Employers can boost productivity by as much as 20% by supporting adult carers in the workplace.
People who give up work to care for relatives or friends are missing out on benefits worth nearly £750m.
The government needs to do more to ensure support services are flexible enough to allow carers to stay in employment.
The Equal Opportunities Commission is calling for additional pension provisions for those with caring responsibilities.
Department for Work and Pensions report into the labour market activity of older workers.
A survey of more than 150 organisations reveals demand for a system of employer-supported older people’s care.
Academics are surveying carers to find out what types of services and support unpaid carers need compared to what services they actually receive.
The report Who Cares Wins looks at the social and business benefits of supporting working carers.
Resources for employers
Guy Guinan, employment partner at law firm Halliwells, provides guidance on drawing up a flexible working policy.
Find out how the Equal Opportunities Commission defines caring. Lots of facts and stats too.
Government contacts for employees who are carers.
Business Link provides some useful tips for employers on carers.
Find out how to get involved with Carers Week.
Delve into the consultation process behind the Work and Families Act 2006.
Sue Yeandle, professor of sociology at the University of Leeds, calls for stronger bonds between employment, caring and public policy
Resources for carers
DirectGov provides useful advice for carers.
Counsel and Care is a charity giving advice and information to older people, their relatives and carers across the UK.
Carers UK is carer-led organisation that aims to improve the lives of carers.
The Princess Royal Trust for Carers is the largest provider of carer support services in the UK.
It also has a site for younger carers.
Crossroads is a charity that provides respite care to carers across England and Wales.
The Carers Liaison Project is a voluntary sector project based in West Sussex.
The Department of Health provides guidance and regulations affecting carers and details of the Carers Grant.
Employers for Carers promotes the business benefits of supporting carers in the workplace.
If you have found this information useful please link to this page.
Email Martin Couzins if you have any more resources that can help employers manage employees who are carers.