From April 2013, the UK government introduced a cap on the total amount of benefit that working age people (16-64 years old) can receive.
This means that your main out-of-work benefits, plus housing benefit, child benefit and child tax credit, will not be more than £350 per week if you are a single person of working age or £500 per week for other households.
The cap will not affect a claimant if they, or their partner, receive working tax credit. The cap is most likely to affect you if you get a number of benefits and live in accommodation that has a high rent. The cap will not affect households that include anyone who receives certain disability benefits such as:
|•||Disability Living Allowance.|
|•||Personal Independence Payments.|
|•||Working tax credits with a disability element.|
|•||Employment and Support Allowance with the support component.|
|•||Industrial Injuries Benefits.|
|•||Armed Forces Compensation Scheme payments.|
|•||War Pension Scheme payment (including War Widow’s/Widower’s Pension and War disablement Pension.|
The Department of Work and Pensions will write to you if these new rules will impact on your household.
What can you do?
If you receive a letter from the DWP, or you want to report a change, it is worth getting a benefits check to double-check your benefits, especially if you or any of your children have disabilities (the new cap may not apply if anyone living in your household is claiming certain disability benefits). Call the GAIN Helpline on 0808 801 1011, or search advice centres across Glasgow
Speak to the council about discretionary housing payments.
Finding work and qualifying for Working Tax Credit may be the best way to ensure that the Benefit Cap doesn't apply.