Fifth of over-45s ‘expect to cut careers short to care for relatives’

One in five employees over the age of 45 anticipates eventually having to leave their job in order to care for an adult family member, a survey has revealed.

Some 20% of women expect to see their careers cut short to look after a relative or partner, as do 17% of men, Aviva found.

But it is not just older relatives that mid-life employees expect to care for.

One in 10 (10%) expects to have to leave work in order to look after children or grandchildren, highlighting pressures as people have to support both younger and older generations.

Lindsey Rix, managing director at Aviva, said: “The practical, financial and emotional costs of caring for relatives, both young and old, are forcing many people in mid-life to make increasingly difficult decisions about balancing their commitments.

“Mid-life is the fastest-growing age demographic in the UK workforce, so we can expect these pressures to grow.”

Patrick Thomson, senior programme manager at the Centre for Ageing Better said: “Millions of people across the UK work as unpaid carers for a family member or friend.

“Carers give vital support to their loved ones and make a huge contribution to the economy. But all too often this comes at the cost of their own careers, as these new figures show.

“In the future, more and more people will be balancing caring responsibilities with working.

“It’s vital that our workplaces are able to accommodate carers’ needs – or we will see increasing numbers forced out of work in the years to come.”

More than 2,000 employees aged 45 and over were surveyed.

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