The government have set a limit on the amount of benefit that working age people can claim. This is called the benefit cap.
The aim of the benefit cap is to stop people getting more in benefit payments than the average wage (after tax and national insurance). The benefit cap will only apply to working age people. People of pensionable age will not be affected by the change.
When a household’s total benefit entitlement exceeds the cap, the amount of housing benefit received will be reduced. The cap will also be applied to people claiming Universal Credit.
How much is the benefit cap?
- £257.69 per week for a single person
- £384.62 for a couple
- £384.62 for a couple with children
- £384.62 for single parents
Which benefits does the cap include?
The following benefits are all included within the benefit cap limit:
- Bereavement Allowance
- Child Benefit
- Child Tax Credit
- Employment and Support Allowance (except where it is paid with the support component)
- Housing Benefit
- Incapacity Benefit
- Income Support
- Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Maternity Allowance
- Severe Disablement Allowance
- Widowed Parent’s Allowance
- Widowed Mother’s Allowance
- Widow’s Pension age-related
- Widow’s Pension
What does this mean to me?
This means that you could receive less Housing Benefit than you currently get.
Remember, even if the amount of Housing Benefit you receive is reduced, you will still be responsible for paying the difference in your rent.
Who will NOT be affected?
The benefit cap will not apply to you if you, your partner, or any children you are responsible for, and who live with you, receive any of the following benefits:
- Working Tax Credit
- Carer’s Allowance
- Guardian’s Allowance
- Disability Living Allowance
- Personal Independence Payment
- Attendance Allowance
- Constant Attendance Allowance
- Employment and Support Allowance, if paid with the support component
- War Widow’s or Widower’s Pension
- Industrial Injuries Benefit