Non-dependant or not???

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    Morning all,

    The case on my desk today is for a pensioner who receives PCGC. The customer has another adult living in the property who pays no rent in return for providing care for the elderly customer. This is not provided by a formal care provider, and is not covered by the supporting people scheme.
    The customer states that the other adult provides the following care:
    Cooking of meals
    Housework and shopping
    To be on call if the customer falls etc.
    The other adult also works part time in the care industry, and the customer maintains that the other adult resides at this address on a “purely professional basis”. The customer notified us of the change to his household after the other adult had completed a one month trial period.
    Would you treat the other adult as a non-dependant, and if not, what would you treat them as? I’m not certain, in light of the fact that no rent is changing hands, how to record this.
    Your thoughts would be much appreciated…


    HB Reg 3 defines a non-dependant as “any person, except someone to whom paragraph (2) applies, who normally resides with a claimant or with whom a claimant normally resides” and paragraph (2) applies to “… (f) a person who lives with the claimant in order to care for him or a partner of his and who is engaged by a charitable or voluntary organisation which makes a charge to the claimant or his partner for the services provided by that person”.

    Therefore, if the carer does normally reside with the claimant, but the claimant is not paying for the service through official channels as required by Reg 3(2)(f), the carer is a non-dependant.

    This will affect HB in two ways:

    – if he is not entitled to AA there will have to be a non-dep deduction, or
    – if the claimant is on AA, the non-dep’s presence will knock out the claimant’s severe disability premium. On the face of it that doesn’t matter immediately because it’s a PCGC case; but if the DWP has not taken the non-dep into account, it is likely that this change will reduce and perhaps even obliterate the claimant’s PCGC.

    Looks like bad news both ways: either you are going to have to slap on a non-dep charge, or if not you are going to be responsible for getting his PC cut and perhaps even applying a taper to his HB and CTB.

    On the other hand, if he hasn’t already claimed AA but now does so on your advice and his claim is successful, then you are the bringer of good news because he won’t have been getting any severe disability additions to HB or PC, so he won’t lose anything there, and as a result of the AA claim he won’t face a non-dep charge either: so he will be better off by the amount of AA he gets, with no strings.

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