Date Revised:

Claiming Job Seeker’s Allowance (JSA) 

You may be able to claim Job Seeker’s Allowance (JSA) to help you while you are looking for work. You will be allocated a work coach/adviser who will be able to offer advice on how to improve your chances of finding a job.

Find out more about Job Seeker's Allowance.

Telling Jobcentre Plus you are a carer

It is up to you whether you tell your work coach you are a carer. If you decide to tell them, they may be able to help you find suitable support. They might also have suggestions on what types of jobs would suit you and your caring role, or point you towards more flexible workplaces.

You can ask your work coach if your Jobcentre Plus has a Carers' Lead. This person will be an expert on carers and might be able to give you more support than your usual work coach. Contact Jobcentre Plus on

If your work coach is aware you are a carer they may also be more flexible about when you need to go to Jobcentre Plus. You must go every two weeks (usually at a time they tell you) to get your JSA.  

Getting help from the Flexible Support Fund 

Some work coaches may have access to the Flexible Support Fund. This is a discretionary fund that could mean you get given extra money for things your work coach thinks would help you get into work. The money could be used, for example, to buy a new suit for an interview or to help pay travel costs when you first start work. 

If you are struggling financially, you can ask your work coach about this funding and if they are able to help. Some rules apply so be prepared for them to say no. 

This information is part of the Getting into work - a guide for young adult carers.

Next update due: June 2017