There was some positive news in the Spring Budget for foster and shared lives carers with substantial increases to the allowance they have previously benefited from (known as Qualifying Care Relief - QCR). These reliefs are intended to make carers’ lives simpler when it comes to completing their self-assessment tax returns.

QCR is a tax simplification measure proving specific tax relief for care income, as a replacement for apportioning and calculating full deductions for expenses. The relief allows carers to keep simpler records for their care activities and use a simpler method of filling in the self-employed pages of their tax returns.

The Budget announcement increases the amount of the income tax Qualifying Care Relief available to foster carers and shared lives carers, and automatically increases the relief each year in line with inflation.

This increase sets Qualifying Care Relief for the tax year 2023 to 24 to:

  • the carer’s share of a fixed amount of £18,140 (from £10,000), plus
  • weekly amounts for each cared-for child or adult of: 
    • £375 (was £200) for each child under 11 years of age; 
    • £450 (was £250) for each child 11 years of age or older; and 
    • £450 (was £250) for each adult

From the 2024-25 tax year, these rates will increase annually in line with consumer price index (CPI) inflation. The rates will be rounded to the nearest £10 for the fixed amount, and the nearest £5 for the weekly amounts.

Photo by Singh on Unsplash

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