Help & Information

Am I a carer?

Many people have caring responsibilities for loved ones but are unsure whether or not they are classed as a carer.

You’re probably a carer if all of the following apply:

  • You do things like helping someone to wash, dress and eat; taking them to regular appointments, doing their shopping or keeping them company.
  • You aren’t paid to look after the person you’re caring for.
  • You spend a lot of time caring for the person - there’s no legal definition of this, but it could mean anything from a few hours a day, to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • You may or may not live with the person you’re caring for.


Carer’s Assessment

If you care for someone, your local council might be able to arrange practical help to allow you to care more effectively and reduce your stress. This could include things like free training, financial support or trips and events for carers.

A carer's assessment is free and anyone over 18 can ask for one. It's separate from the needs assessment for the person you care for but you can ask to have them both done at the same time.

The carer's assessment looks at how caring affects your life and work, and how you can carry on doing the things that are important to you and your family. Your physical, mental and emotional wellbeing will be at the heart of your assessment. It will also consider other important issues, such as whether you work or want to work, and whether you want to do more socially.

This isn't an exam and you won't be judged on the care you provide, it is simply to ensure that you are receiving the relevant support.

The first thing you need to do is contact adult social services at your local council and ask for a carer's assessment. You can find details of your local adult social care services - Find local authority adult social care services - NHS (


How to prepare for your carer's assessment

You'll need:

  • your NHS number (if you have one)
  • your GP's name, address and phone number
  • contact details of anyone who's coming to the assessment with you
  • the name, address, date of birth and NHS number of the person you care for (if you have it)
  • your email address

Give as much detail as you can about the impact caring for someone is having on your life. This will help make sure you get all the help and support you need.