Benefit cap FAQs
How will the benefit cap affect me?
Household benefits will drop from £26,000 a year to two lower levels:
- In London, it’s £23,000 (£15,410 for singles without children)
- Outside London, it’s £20,000 (£13,400 for singles without children).
How is it worked out?
The benefit cap is calculated by adding all the benefits that a claimant and their partner receive. If it is more than the amounts above (eg £23,000 / £20,000) then you will be capped. The capped money is taken off your housing benefit claim (unless you receive universal credit; in which case, it is taken from this). This means that you will have to budget to pay any top-up for the shortfall in your rent payments.
What benefits can be affected by the benefit cap?
If you receive a combination of any of these benefits the amount of money you get may be reduced:
- housing benefit (unless you live in supported housing)
- income support (IS)
- jobseeker’s allowance (JSA)
- employment and support allowance (ESA) (unless you are in the support group)
- incapacity benefit
- child benefit and child tax credits
- maternity benefits and widows benefits paid by the Department for Work and Pensions
- severe disablement allowance
- universal credit
- bereavement allowance.
Could I be excluded from the benefit cap?
You won’t be affected if you or your partner qualifies for or receives any of the following benefits:
- Working Tax Credit
- Disability Living Allowance (or Personal Independence Payment)
- Attendance Allowance
- Industrial Injuries Benefits (and equivalent payments as part of a war disablement pension or the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme)
- The support component of Employment and Support Allowance
- War Widow’s or War Widower’s Pension.
The government announced that those receiving a carer’s allowance will also be exempt.
If you are struggling with anything from money worries, to managing your house, to getting back into work then it might be worth calling us to see if we can lend a hand.