Benefit Advice

Benefit Changes (Welfare Reform)

 We have had several changes to the benefit system over previous years and with more changes to come we know it can be complicated. If you're unsure as to which in or out of work benefits you may be entitled to please contact us for free advice or a benefit check.

Alternatively, you can complete a self-calculation on the Entitled to website by following this link
Please see the latest changes that may affect your Benefits as part of ongoing Welfare Reform:

Council Tax Support Scheme

 Changes have been made to the council tax support scheme from April 2018. The main change is that the maximum entitlement has been restricted to 80% of your council tax bill. This means that everyone is being asked to pay 20% of their annual council tax charge. This change won't affect you if you're in receipt of the severe disability premium, the support component of employment support allowance or a war pension.
Please contact Shropshire Council Revenues & Benefits team for more information:0345 678 9001 or visit their website by following this link

Benefit cap rules from December 2016

 The benefit cap is a limit on the total amount of benefit that a household can receive. The Government believes the Benefit Cap: 
• Acts as an incentive to work, i.e. by limiting the amount of benefit that households out of work will receive it will be more likely they will be better off on entering work.

• Promotes greater fairness in the welfare system between those out of work on benefits and tax payers in employment.

• Reduces benefit expenditure and helps tackle the financial deficit.

The cap starts if you receive over £384.62 a week (i.e. 20,000 per year). That is for couples, families and lone parent households. For single adults without children, the cap starts at £257.69 per week. Certain claimants will be excluded from this i.e. carers or households receiving disability benefits. 

If you think this may affect your family and you’d like to chat about the options please contact us.

Proposed removal of housing costs for 18- 21s

Since April 2017, some young people who are on Universal Credit in a full digital service have not been able to claim for the Housing Costs Element.  The Government have announced that this will be reversed and all 18-21 year olds who have a tenancy will be able to claim the Housing Cost Element under Universal Credit.  However this hasn’t been implemented yet.  We are still waiting for further guidance from the DWP regarding this policy.

Local Housing Allowance and Housing Benefit

 Anyone taking a new general needs tenancy from April 2016 are likely to be affected by the new rules that will come into effect from April 2019. This will mean your housing benefit could reduce to the LHA applicable to your property. Before making that final decision to move house please contact the team for advice.