Know your rights

We know that under-claiming is a much bigger problem than benefit fraud. The government’s welfare reforms do nothing to make sure that people struggling to survive get what they are entitled to. Read on to make sure you’re getting your entitlements…

A guide to claiming benefits for people with a health problem or disability


Incapacity Benefit (IB)
If you are on Incapacity Benefit (claimed before 27 October 2008), there are no restrictions to the hours or type of course you can do. Also, any funding received does not affect entitlement to IB

Income Support (IS)

If you are on income support (claimed before 27 October 2008) due to incapacity, (i.e. with a disability premium), there is no restriction on the amount of hours you can study. Any funding you receive may be taken into account in the same way as earnings though.

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
From 27 October 2008, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) introduced ESA for people whose ability to work is limited by ill health or disability. This replaces Incapacity Benefit and Income Support. ESA is made up of two elements:-
a) Income-related ESA if you don’t have enough money to live on
b) Contributions-based ESA may be paid if you have paid enough National Insurance contributions in specific tax years.
You will be placed in the Work focused group or the Support Group. The rules depend on if you are over or under 19, whether you receive DLA (see below) and whether you qualify for the contribution based element or not. Please see an advisor.
To claim-call Jobcentre plus 0800 055 6688

Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
This is for people who have mobility problems (difficulty getting around) or care needs, such as help with shopping, cooking or getting up/going to bed. It is paid at various rates.

To claim-call DLA Unit 0845 7123456

Housing Benefit (HB)
If you are in receipt of DLA HRCC you can claim housing benefit. If you are receipt of other benefits, such as IS and ESA (see above), then these are called ‘gateway benefits’ and allow you to claim HB.
To Claim-contact your local authority

Council Tax Benefit (CTB)
Full time students are not liable for council tax. If you are receiving IB, IS or ESA, you should also receive Council Tax Benefit.
To Claim-contact your local authority.

Residency conditions apply to all these benefits- if you have not lived in the UK or EAA for three years, or are an asylum seeker, or are subject to immigration control you may not be entitled to claim.


A guide to claiming benefits for people caring for children


We know that under-claiming is a much bigger problem than benefit fraud. The government’s welfare reforms do nothing to make sure that people struggling to survive get what they are entitled to. Read on if you are caring for a child and make sure you’re getting your entitlements…

Income Support (IS)
If you are responsible for a child under 10 years old, you may be able to receive IS. If you are raising children by yourself (a ‘lone parent’), or you and your partner have health problems, caring responsibilities or are both full time students, you will not have to be available for work and can study as many hours as you wish.
To claim-call Jobcentre plus 0800 055 6688

Jobseekers Allowance (JSA)
If you do not fit into the above categories, new legislation from November 2009 states that if your youngest child is ten years old or over, you will be expected to claim JSA, or ‘sign on’. You will need to be available for and actively seeking work You will also need to participate in the New Deal programme.
To claim-call Jobcentre plus on 0800 055 6688

Housing Benefit (HB)
If you are solely responsible for a child (a Lone Parent) under sixteen you can claim housing benefit. If you are receipt of other benefits, such as IS and JSA (see above,) then these are called gateway benefits and allow you to claim HB. If you are working part time, or receiving working tax credits, and are on a low income, you may be able to claim HB.
To Claim-contact your local authority

Child Benefit (CB)
Is a universal benefit for people caring for children under 16 (or up to 19 in full time education).
To Claim- Child Benefit Helpline on 0845 302 1444

Child Tax Credit (CTC)
Child Tax Credit is for people who are responsible for at least one child. Child Tax Credit is paid direct to the person who is mainly responsible for caring for the child or children
To Claim- HM Revenue and Customs 0845 300 3900

Working Tax Credits (WTC)
Payable if you are working over 16 hours a week and care for a child. There is an extra amount if you work over 30 hours.
To Claim- HM Revenue and Customs 0845 300 3900

Council Tax Benefit (CTB)
If you are receiving JSA, IS or HB, you should also receive Council Tax Benefit.
To Claim-contact your local authority.

Residency conditions apply to all these benefits- if you have not lived in the UK or EAA for three years, or are an asylum seeker, or are subject to immigration control you may not be entitled to claim.

Advertisements