Benefits you're entitled to: Employment and Support Allowance

Published by on 21 January 2015.
Last updated on 21 January 2015

Benefits

However, many families do not get the help that they need, either because they do not understand the system, or because they think that they are not entitled to anything.

Here's the Moneywise guide to claiming Employment and Support Allowance.

What is it?

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) is paid to those who have limited capability for work because of their sickness or disability but do not get Statutory Sick Pay.

How much might you get?

ESA comes in two types, just like JSA. Income-related ESA is means tested, but contributory ESA is non-means tested. Both types of ESA usually require you to have assessments to see if you are capable of working.

Contributory ESA is available for a year if you have paid sufficient National Insurance contributions. Income-related ESA is available to those on low incomes and with savings under £16,000. There are special rules for those diagnosed with a terminal illness.

The amount you will receive depends on whether you are in the assessment period of a claim (first 13 weeks), what level of support you are assessed as needing, your age and whether you live with a partner.

How can I work out what other benefits I'm eligible for?

The amount of money families receive from benefits varies wildly depending on circumstances. The government website gov.uk has details of how to contact different departments, while the tax credits helpline is available on 0345 300 3900.

The charity website Turn2us.org.uk includes a calculator that allows you to input all of your circumstances and work out your entitlements, while the charity also has a free helpline on 0808 802 2000.

Another benefits calculator is available at entitledto.co.uk.

BENEFITS YOU'RE ENTITLED TO: WORKING TAX CREDIT

BENEFITS YOU'RE ENTITLED TO: JOBSEEKER'S ALLOWANCE

BENEFITS YOU'RE ENTITLED TO: INCOME SUPPORT

BENEFITS YOU'RE ENTITLED TO: HOUSING BENEFIT

BENEFITS YOU'RE ENTITLED TO: CHILD TAX CREDIT

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