When people are not able to work in the United Kingdom there are a number of benefits available to help ease difficulties. One of these is called Income Support. It is provided to support an individual who can only work fewer than sixteen hours per week and whose income is not sufficient to support their basic everyday needs. There are a number of regulations which dictate who is eligible to receive the payments and under what circumstances the benefit will be paid. With changes to benefits being discussed at present concerning the introduction of Universal Credits, people are researching what exactly will be changed and which benefit they might claim.
Claiming Income Support
In addition to being paid to those with a very low income, it can also be paid to those who are unable to earn their own wages. This applies to individuals who have a serious justification for their unemployment, such as a handicap, long-term and performance-affecting disability or a terminal and life-limiting illness. In some cases, parents with children to care for and who are unable to work enough hours can qualify for the relief provided by Income Support.
The amount of benefit which will be paid changes depending on an individual’s circumstances, including their age. Below the age of 24, the rate paid is lower than to those over that age. Normally, benefits are only paid to those over the age of 18 but in situations where the claimant is a single parent, benefits can be payable to people between 16 and 18 years old. The level of Income Support which will be paid takes into account the personal allowance of each person and their rent costs or housing payments. Income Support tends to take into account any savings, pensions or earnings which total more than £6,000. Benefits are paid directly into a bank account by transfer as this is the quickest and most reliable means.
How to Claim
In order to claim Income Support, it is necessary to apply by telephone or in writing. Finding the Income Support phone number is easy, obtained online as well as through local Job Centres. These offices will also have the relevant paperwork to use to put together an application in writing, as well as a prepaid envelope. In order to make the claim, it might be necessary to provide copies of any bank statement or rent and housing cost invoices, so that there is documentary proof of the individual’s current financial status. The forms are clear in explaining what is required, though, and most people are able to complete them without difficulty.
When in receipt of the benefit, it is important to let the government know if there are any changes in your situation. There are a number of circumstances which can affect a person’s entitlement. Collecting benefits when circumstances have changed can constitute fraud and needs to be avoided by being completely honest with the authorities. Changes in circumstances include moving house, taking lodgers into your current home, changing bank accounts, getting a new job or working more or fewer shifts, or becoming ill and entering hospital.