We are able to offer extra support to our residents who are struggling to manage their homes and tenancies

Welfare Support

COVID Job Retention Scheme

An HMRC grant is available for employers with employees on temporary leave who can’t work due to Covid-19. It covers a % of furloughed wages. Employees should receive at least 80% of their normal wage, (up to a maximum of £2500 before tax).

Anyone who is furloughed and claiming benefits is treated as working their normal hours.

When someone can’t work their normal hours, as long as they work one third of them, the employer should pay for those hours. The employer and the government then each pay for the remaining two thirds of normal working hours up to a maximum of £697.92 per month.

Someone on minimum wage could get up to £65 less each week before deductions.

What do I need to do?

If you are struggling to pay your rent and other bills, please get in touch. You can also visit our supporting you webpage for more information on budgeting, benefits, debt and what other help we can offer you.

Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS)

This is a taxable grant for people who are self-employed worth either 80%, 70% or 20% of their average monthly profits over the last three years. (Up to a maximum of £2500 a month).

To qualify, you must submit a 2018/19 tax return. You can’t be a director of a company, more than half your income must come from being self-employed, and your annual trading profits must be less than £50,000.

Someone who is entitled to a payment will be treated as working their normal hours when claiming benefits.

What do I need to do?

If you are struggling to pay your rent and other bills, please get in touch. You can also visit our supporting you webpage for more information on budgeting, benefits, debt and what other help we can offer you.

End Of Severe Disability Premium (SDP) Gateway

The government has removed this gateway, which means people with a severe disability premium in a legacy benefit cannot claim Universal Credit. But, someone may qualify for what is known as a ‘transitional element’ (a fixed amount) in their first Universal Credit assessment. There are two types of ‘element’ with slightly different values. These depend on the date Universal Credit is paid - from, before, on or after 27 January 2021.

Anyone moving from one council area to another will have to claim Universal Credit whether or not they receive an SDP premium in a legacy claim. This means changing to monthly payments and possibly getting less than they would on legacy benefits.

If you move over to Universal Credit, we will contact you after we check your rent entitlement with the Department for Work and Pensions. You can contact us if you prefer, you don’t have to wait.

What do I need to do?

If you’re struggling to pay your rent and other bills, please get in touch or visit our supporting you webpage for more information on benefits, debt and other help we can offer you.

Legacy Benefits

If you get legacy benefits, you should do a ‘better off’ check before applying for Universal Credit to see if you are better off staying on them. Also, if you are going to be out of work for up to four weeks, it may be better to stay on Working Tax Credits because:

  • If you claim Universal Credit, your Housing Benefit and tax credit will stop.
  • You will have to wait around five weeks before getting Universal Credit.
  • You might find you can get advance, but it’s a loan and has to be paid back.
  • For some people, Universal Credit pays less and they could be worse off.
  • More debt deductions can be taken from Universal Credit.

What do I need to do?

If you’re struggling to pay your rent and other bills, please get in touch or visit our supporting you webpage for more information on benefits, debt and other help we can offer you.

Other Measures

Other Measures – Sick Pay, Employment Seekers Allowance, Council Tax Support

Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) and new style Employment Seekers Allowance (ESA) are paid to anyone self-isolating due to Covid-19. Fit notes are not needed for self-isolation and an isolation note from NHS 111 online is enough for SSP.

The basic rate of Universal Credit and working tax credit increased by £20 a week from 6 April 2020. This is expected to end in March.

Anyone who receives council tax support will see their bill reduce by £150.

Anyone who has received a NHS test and trace/protect notification telling them to self-isolate can get a £500 grant if they are employed or self-employed, can’t work from home or will lose income as a result. This is also paid if someone receives Universal Credit, Job Seekers Allowance, Income Support, Employment Support Allowance, Pension Credit, Housing Benefit or Working Tax Credits.

What do I need to do?

To find out more, visit Gov.UK test and trace support payment scheme

Other Support

Rent and service charges explained – helpful information can be found here

Council tax support – check your local council’s scheme.

Discretionary Housing payment – more at Gov.uk

Free school meals or equivalent – contact your school or local council.

Free prescriptions – check the NHS website to see if they qualify.

Budgeting advance – this can be claimed through Universal Credit for specific items or purchases. It must be paid back in 12 months.

Healthy Start vouchers – some benefit claimants are entitled to these if they are at least 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under 4. They should apply through their midwife or health visitor.

Flexible support fund – aims to help with the costs of finding a job. Contact your local job centre.

Local Welfare assistance – local councils have their own support fund to help with urgent care and need. Please contact your local council about this.


Links to further help, advice and services on our website

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