Parents and carers should be made aware of what the impact may be on their household income as result of the introduction of the Benefit Cap for those families who receive Government benefits or allowances.
Between 15 July and 30 Septmeber 2013 local councils will be introducing the benefit cap where a limit will be put on the total amount of benefit that most people aged 16 to 64 can receive.
For recipients of Housing Benefit for example, this will be reduced to make sure that the money paid does not exceed the cap limit.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) will be contacting those people who currently receive benefits if they are going to be affected by the cap.
Some families will need time and support to budget as a result of the changes. The Citizens Advice Bureau, housing organisations (for their tenants) and other voluntary/community organisations are providing support though their services are in demand.
Benefit cap – what’s included?
The cap will apply to the total amount that the people in the household receive from the following benefits:
- Bereavement Allowance
- Carer’s Allowance
- Child Benefit
- Child Tax Credit
- Employment and Support Allowance (unless you get the support component)
- Guardian’s Allowance
- Housing Benefit
- Incapacity Benefit
- Income Support
- Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Maternity Allowance
- Severe Disablement Allowance
- Widowed Parent’s Allowance (or Widowed Mother’s Allowance or Widows Pension you started getting before 9 April 2001)
How much is the benefit cap?
The level of the cap will be:
- £500 a week for couples (with or without children living with them)
- £500 a week for single parents whose children live with them
- £350 a week for single adults who don’t have children, or whose children don’t live with them
Who won’t be affected?
Households who qualify for Working Tax Credit or receive any of the following benefits:
- Disability Living Allowance
- Personal Independence Payment
- Attendance Allowance
- Industrial Injuries Benefits (and equivalent payments as part of a war disablement pension or the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme)
- Employment and Support Allowance, if the support component is received
- War Widow’s or War Widower’s Pension
Households might be affected by the cap if any grown-up children still live there and they qualify for one of these benefits. This is because they won’t normally count as part of the household.
The Government have produced a calculator to find out if current benefits could be affected: https://www.dwpe-services.direct.gov.uk/portal/page/portal/bcc/lp
For further details visit: https://www.gov.uk/benefit-cap