NEW HOUSING LAW
Local housing allowance restrictions Extended
-Private tenants up to 25 years old get a reduced help with their rent. This extended to under 35 year old.
– Under 35 years old can get a full housing benefit only if they occupy a shared accommodation.
– LHA Cap (Private Tenancies)
LHA allows set amounts for the rent depending on the area and number of bedrooms. Now, an absolute cap is introduced so that whatever the rent is- the LHA weekly rates cannot exceed:
- £250 for a 1 bedroomed property
- £290 for a 2 bedroomed property
- £340 for a 3 bedroomed property
- £400 for a 4 bedroomed property
Non dependant deductions increase (private and social tenancies): Other adults expected to contribute more to the rent and council tax bill.
WELFARE LAW CHANGES
TAX CREDIT CHANGES
- The £ 4 increase in the child tax credit child element for each child aged one and two, planned by the labour government, is abolished by the coalition government.
- Once a claimant’s income reaches £40,000 their Tax Credits will stop.
- Backdating claims and for certain changes in circumstances reduces from 3 to 1 month
- A couple are only able to claim Working Tax Credit if they work a minimum of 24 hours a week between them, with one working at least 16 hours
Two Major changes for Contribution Based Employment and Support Allowance (C-ESA)
- (C)ESA limited to one year
Awards before April 2012 will count towards the year. So someone who was awarded it on Jan. 2012, will only have 9 months of it left from April. After 12 months you will have to go through medical assessment again. If you score enough points i.e. 15 points then you will be awarded ESA for another 12 months.
The ESA in youth provision ends on 30 April 2012 . This is where claimants aged 16 to 19 or up to 25 . If one appears to satisfy the national insurance rules for ESA and so could get contribution based ESA.
Sanctions Increase to 3 years
Failure (without good cause) to take part in jobseeking activities may lead to a benefit sanction. The government plan to increase the sanction period to 3 years. Sanctions mean jobseekers allowance is stopped and hardship payments are only paid if hardship can be proven or the household is vulnerable.
It will be introduced from October 2013 to April 2014. During this period new claims for out of work support are treated as claims for universal credit. No new income-based jobseeker’s allowance, income related employment and support allowance, income support or housing benefit claims are accepted.
People moving from out-of-work benefits into work transfer onto universal credit
April 2014. No new claims for tax credits
April 2014 to October 2017 existing claimants to be transferred to universal credit.