What help can I get when I start work?
If you have been receiving Income Support, Job Seekers Allowance (Income Based), Incapacity Benefit, Employment Support Allowance or Severe Disablement Benefit and this has stopped because:
you or your partner have started work or self employment
you or your partner have received an increase in pay
you or your partner have received an increase in the hours you work to 16 hours or more, then, you may be able to receive an extended payment.
What is an Extended Payment?
An Extended Payment is an additional four weeks Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support paid at the rate paid in the last benefit week before you started work. The extended payment can still be made even if you move to another address to start work, but the amount of the extended payment may be different, this will depend on where you move.
How do I qualify for an Extended Payment?
The main qualifications for an extended payment are:
the job or increased hours must be expected to last for 5 weeks or longer
when the claim for extended payment is made you must be aged under 60
you or your partner must have been receiving Income Support or Job Seekers Allowance (Income Based), Incapacity Benefit, Employment Support Allowance (Income Related) or Severe Disablement Allowance continuously for 26 weeks before starting work or increasing the working hours.
All these conditions must be met to be entitled to the Extended Payment. In certain circumstances we may have to check with the Job Centre Plus to confirm entitlement to the various qualifying benefits for the 26 weeks.
How do I claim an Extended Payment?
You need to tell us if:
you or your partner start work/self-employment for 16 hours or more per week, or that
you or your partners hours or earnings are about to increase
the work or the increase in pay is expected to last 5 weeks or more.
You can do this by phoning or writing.
What happens after my extended payment comes to an end, or if I do not qualify for an extended payment?
You may still qualify for Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support based on your new income details. You will need to give us full details of your new income and provide proof of you and your partners' earnings, benefits and capital.
Do not delay in returning all the necessary information; even if you don't have all the necessary proof, otherwise you could lose benefit.