Benefits support

Image: A family saving money

We want you to receive the financial support that you are entitled to.

Our team are on hand to answer any questions you have about the welfare benefits system and discuss any changes that may affect you.

The information on this page looks to provide further information on topics including universal credit, bedroom tax and the benefits cap. However if you'd like to talk to one of the team about how we can help you with your finances, please get in touch.

 

The introduction of the new Welfare Reform Act from 1 April 2013 affected the amount of money you could receive from housing benefits and also changed the way you received it.

 What are you entitled to?

We’ve put together a handy list with some of the changes which have been introduced since April.

Rules for backdating Housing Benefit have changed

The rules for backdating Housing Benefit have now changed.

From 1 April 2016, the maximum time a claim can be backdated is four weeks (for working age claimants).

We know from experience it can be difficult for some residents to make a timely claim for Housing Benefit.

For more information, please contact us. You can also find out further information on the changes here.

The amount you earn before paying tax

The amount you earn before paying tax (Personal Tax Allowance) has increased from £10,600 to £11,000.

Freeze on working age benefits

The government introduced a four year freeze to working age benefits whilst still protecting pensioners, and benefits related to the extra costs of disability.

The new state pension - rules and changes explained

The State Pension changed on 6 April 2016. If you reach State Pension age on or after that date you’ll get the new State Pension under the new rules.

You can find out more through the Money Advice Service's handy guide.

New National Living Wage

The new National Living Wage was introduced in April 2016, starting at £7.20 an hour for workers aged 25 and above. This will rise to £9 an hour by 2020.

Reduction in Income Rise Disregard in Tax Credits

The amount by which a tax credit claimant’s income can increase in-year compared to their previous year’s income before their award is adjusted has been reduced from £5,000 to £2,500.

Cut to in-work Tax Credits

The income threshold limit - the level of earnings at which a household’s tax credits and Universal Credit award starts to be withdrawn for every extra pound earned - reduced from £6,420 to £3,850.

Housing Benefit and Pension Credit payments - travelling abroad

If you're in receipt of Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit the government has announced that they will end payments for those claimants who travel outside of Great Britain for longer than four weeks (with no gap).

If this happens you will need to make a new claim on your return.

Removing Housing Benefit Family Premium

Housing Benefit Family Premium has been withdrawn for new claims.


How we can help:

We're passionate about helping our customers to save money. And there are a number of ways we can help, including offering support on:
  • The best way to budget
  • How to open a bank account
  • How to claim benefits and understand the welfare benefit reforms
  • Top tips to reduce the cost of your bills
  • Grants and schemes you may be eligible for.

Interested?

Contact us today to find out how we can help - simply use the form below to get started.  You can also contact us in a number of other ways to find out more information about how we can help.

 Get in touch