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Author Topic: Self-employment and benefits  (Read 4064 times)
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rukaluka
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« on: December 11, 2010, 07:50:02 PM »

Is anyone here self-employed and still qualifying for benefits such as ESA? Any advice would be much aprpeciated?  s_hi
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NaughtyComposer.
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« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2011, 11:53:22 AM »

Hi,  I don't really have any advice, I suggest you speak to someone from  an advice centre. I started being self-employed about 3 years ago. I am still ill but I signed off almost all benefits (incapacity benefit,etc).
I am still receiving a small about of housing benefit and council tax benefit. I was given working tax credit for 1 year, I think, because I got back into work. I was also granted a few weeks of paid rent.

One thing you should definitely do, is testing your self-employment for a couple of months before you take more drastic actions with your benefits. I think the Government allows for this 'testing' phase even while you receive benefits, but I can't remember exactly for how long, I think it was 7 or 8 weeks, I can't remember.
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Jamepoison
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« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2017, 11:22:22 AM »


I understand all of these undertakings. It is something that is very useful. I know I'm getting very good at all.
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mitchie
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« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2018, 10:23:12 PM »

Hi all,
Just to re-introduce myself, I'm the mum of my 36 year old daughter who has had CFS for the past 10 years or so. I haven't posted for quite a long time as she was doing so well but unfortunately, not so good at the moment.
She hasn't had state benefits of any sort, but I'd really like to see if I can get some financial help for her.
She's self-employed and I'm hoping to help her claim Working Tax Benefit. However, she lives with her father full-time (he's a pensioner) so I'm not sure if she could still claim benefits while living at home.
Anybody any knowledge of this before I wade in with Gov.uk!
Thanks very much and good wishes to all!
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agapanthus
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« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2018, 08:32:46 AM »

Hello mitchie.

I know that so much is changing with Universal Credit that it is hard to give a definitive answer. Once upon a time I myself claimed tax credits when working as a disabled person (though not self employed) but from a quick Google, Universal Credit appears now to be a defining factor and UC has pretty well extended all over the country I believe for NEW claimants.

So it seems that if you live in a UC area, your daughter cannot just put in a claim for Working tax credit as you once could but you have to put in a claim for Universal Credit and under UC it is harder to get the self employed UC than it was before UC.
https://www.gov.uk/working-tax-credit/eligibility

With regard to living with her father then it looks as if he is classed as a non-dependant and I did find a link on this which may help. https://www.entitledto.co.uk/help/non-dependants   

It's all rather a complicated area unfortunately! I don't know if you belong to Facebook but there is an excellent support group on there regarding benefits for people with chronic illness such as ME, so they may be able to help more. It's called UK M.E. and Chronic Illness Benefits Advice Group. Jane Clout is especially helpful on there.
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mitchie
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« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2018, 10:15:25 AM »

Hello Agapanthus,
Very many thanks for your kind and helpful answer!
I'll check out the Universal Credit, I'm not up to date with these things so whilst I've heard of it, I didn't consider it.
With my daughter's father being a pensioner, I wasn't considering that he might be a dependent but rather the opposite. I thought they might say, well, you're living with your father so there's no rent or expenses to pay and he can provide you.
That's certainly true to an extent although that means two people living from one pension and that isn't fair on him. I help out financially to a small extent but I don't exactly have much to spare.
The other thing I worry about is that she's not paying NIC or into a private pension fund so if she could get benefits, I'd want to make sure she at least address the NIC otherwise she'll end up with little money when she's old!
I'll check out the links you've given me! Thank you again!
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agapanthus
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« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2018, 11:15:58 AM »

Yes, I understand your point re your daughter's father and I too was considering those issues with regard to what she might have to contribute which is different for dependants and non-dependants - that was the only reason I sent that link as so many of the others just quote dependants. I wasn't sure how much they take into account, but certainly they would look at his full income as well as hers with regard to any help with housing - ie they regard it as a whole household for housing if it's a close relative.

I think the rules are different under Universal Credit for some things though compared with how it was previously (formulae for working out amounts). Not sure about Council Tax relief but that's another issue of course that she may get SOME help with.

Where your daughter would be considered separately though I think is with regard to any other payments for her daily living expenses. He would not be expected to provide those for food, personal expenses etc. The real problem comes with Universal credit and self employment though. It's been hugely criticised as it assumes that the person doing self employment is bringing in a certain amount of money which is really quite high and unrealistic, before any help is given. That said, I have just found this link on UC and Self Employment which indicates that if someone is judged to be sufficiently disabled that the 'minimum income floor' does not apply (I did not know this and I don't know quite how it then operates but applying for ESA would be part of that I think). https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/universal-credit/on-universal-credit/how-the-minimum-income-floor-works-if-youre-self-employed/

Things like Employment and Support Allowance have now been brought under UC also and until your daughter claims she won't know if she will qualify for that, as ESA has got tougher over the years (I would recommend getting support for doing the claim form for this as it's a minefield as is UC unfortunately). She would have to be assessed in some way but it's really important that the forms for ESA are filled in carefully.  The idea of UC is of course that ultimately it's easier as it's all under one umbrella but at the moment it's a bit of a mess and people are falling through the safety net. UC application I know has to be done online but more than that I do not know.

I am afraid that Universal Credit is almost certainly going to be an important thing to research but one of those links I sent has a list of all the places it has been rolled out now. I am not sure if it completely covers the country yet, but if not then nearly so and all NEW claimants are then affected.
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