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Changes to your benefits

There are many changes to benefits and taxes happening over the next few years, which are often referred to as the welfare reform.

Anyone under pension age and claiming any of the following benefits may be affected by welfare reform:

  • Jobseeker's allowance
  • Income support
  • Employment and support allowance
  • Tax credits
  • Housing benefit

Welfare reform does not affect tenants of pension age. For more information about the state pension age, see UK State Pension Age (PDF Document, 0.1 Mb)


The benefit cap

The maximum amount any household can receive in benefits, including housing costs, is:

  • £500 per week for couples and lone parents
  • £350 per week for single people without children

This is applied to the combined income of the main out-of-work benefits plus housing benefit, child benefit and child tax credit. 


Housing benefit

Since April 2013, the 'bedroom tax' has meant housing benefit payments are based on the number of bedrooms you need, not the number of bedrooms your home has. So if your home has more bedrooms than you need your housing benefit payments will be reduced. 


Council tax benefit

Council tax benefit was abolished in April 2013 and has since been replaced with council tax support. The amount of money Charnwood Borough Council receives from the government to pay for council tax benefit has been cut and as a result, councils throughout the country have designed a local scheme called council tax support.


Universal credit

Introduction of universal credit began in June, 2015. Universal Credit is a new type of benefit designed to support people who are on a low income or out of work. It will eventually replace six existing benefits and is currently being rolled out in stages across the UK.

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