Who is an unpaid carer
Role of an unpaid carer
A guide to help spot early signs of becoming a carer, responsibilities and rights as a carer and Kingston’s long-term plan to support carers in the borough.
The law says you’re a carer if you provide unpaid assistance to someone who requires support due to illness, disability or age. You might be a family member, partner, friend, or neighbour. You could also be a carer if you’re a young person supporting a parent, grandparent or sibling.
Early signs of becoming a carer
Carers often start by providing occasional help. If you're increasingly involved in caring for someone, even in small ways, you might be stepping into a carer’s role without realising it.
If you start to spend time helping someone, do frequent check-ins on their wellbeing, adjust your schedule to support them or feel a growing sense of responsibility for their care, you might be a carer.
Understand your caring responsibilities
You might be a carer if you regularly help someone with:
- personal care like dressing, showering and eating
- managing their medication including giving them medicine, keeping track of their prescriptions and speaking to the doctor on their behalf
- using your car or public transport to help them get around, doing their shopping and running errands on their behalf
- keeping them company, listening to their concerns and offering emotional support
- supporting them with admin like managing their finances, completing paperwork and keeping track of appointments
- supporting them with their mental wellbeing like helping out with tasks in the home