Can My Mum Pay Me To Care For Her?

James Bowdler

11 September, 2023

2 min read

Yes, if your mum has the financial resources, she can privately pay you to care for her. However, if you’re considering using council-funded direct payments, the situation is more complex and depends on specific circumstances.

As inhabitants of an increasingly ageing society, more and more of us are finding ourselves in the position of becoming caregivers for our elderly parents. The important question from this situation is: Can my mum pay me to care for her? While the answer isn’t as straightforward as a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’, it is a topic worth discussing. Indeed, understanding the complexities and nuances of this question can potentially help many families navigate their way through such situations.

Cost of Care – The Complete Guide to Paying and Funding Your Care in 2024
Read Now

The Basic Scenario

In the simplest scenario, if your mum has the financial resources, she can pay you to care for her. This can be considered a private arrangement and falls under the ‘private care’ category in the UK healthcare system. The specifications of the agreement, including the amount, frequency, and payment method, can vary depending on the individual circumstances of the family involved.

However, the situation becomes more complex if the person cared for is eligible for council support towards their care costs.

The Role of the Council

Local councils in the UK support elderly or disabled persons who need help with daily activities such as washing, dressing, or moving around. This support is typically offered in direct payments, which are transferred directly to the person in need or their nominated representative, ideally to be used for arranging and paying for care services.

But what happens if you, as a family member, want to step in and provide the necessary care? Can those direct payments be used to pay you? The answer can be complicated.

Council-Funded Direct Payments: The General Rule

As a general rule, council-funded direct payments are not meant to be used to pay for close family members providing care. This includes spouses, civil partners, and family members living in the same household. The philosophy behind this rule is based on the belief that close family members or partners are obliged or expected to provide care without any financial remuneration.

However, like all rules, there are exceptions.

Exceptions to the Rule

While many councils adhere to the general rule, others may make an exception if they are convinced that the care you provide as a family member is indispensable to your mum’s well-being. This is more likely to happen if you live separately from your mum, highlighting the fact that your provision of care is not due to Lived proximity but choice and compassion.

An example where this could be the case is if you are the only family member able to communicate effectively with your mum because of a language barrier or cultural reasons or if your mum suffers from a condition like dementia. She feels most safe and relaxed in your company.

Simply put, if it can be demonstrated that you are the most suitable person to provide the required care, some councils may be open to using direct payments to compensate you.

Becoming a Paid Caregiver and Care Allowance

While being a paid caregiver may sound appealing, it’s essential to understand the potential implications. For instance, if you begin receiving payments for care services, you could become ineligible to receive Carer’s Allowance, depending upon your earnings.

Carer’s Allowance is a state benefit provided to those who spend a certain number of hours per week providing care for a disabled person – potentially including your mum. However, there is a cap on how much you can earn while receiving Carer’s Allowance, and payments for care services provided to your mum could tip you over this limit.


So, can your mum pay you to care for her? It depends. If she’s privately paying for care services, the answer is most definitely ‘yes’. But the situation becomes more complicated if we’re talking about direct payments from the council.

Ultimately, navigating this carefully is crucial and seeking advice from the local council, a social worker, or a legal expert specialising in healthcare issues. Each situation is unique, and understanding the rules and exceptions in your local area could make a significant difference in managing your mum’s care.

Other Related Articles

James Bowdler


I founded and manage PrimeCarers, a Platform that connects Private Clients with Private Carers near them.

Local Carers Near

View All Carers Near

View All