Universal Credit, disabled, working weekly hours required — Scope | Disability forum
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Universal Credit, disabled, working weekly hours required

keplar20
keplar20 Community member Posts: 8 Listener
Hi,

I am looking for some advice in regards to claiming universal credit.

Background: I’m a bilateral leg amputee, I am claiming legacy benefits but never claimed ESA as my wife claimed income support.
I have not worked for some due to illness, and being declined job after job, but have recently been successful and have been offered a job for 20 hours per week on minimum wage, my wife works 10 hours a week she is in receipt of carers allowance for our disabled daughter so I’m aware that she will not be required to extend her hours or look for extra work on universal credit.
I spoke to my local council and they have said it might be better to claim Universal Credit as we will have to move over by the end of the year.

My question: 

Obviously I am limited in what work I can do being a bilateral leg amputee, I was offered a 30 hour per week contract but my new employer and I agreed 6 hours per day on my prosthetic legs would be to much, so we agreed on 4 hours per day (20 hours per week) I have read online that you need to work 30 hours per week on Universal Credit, is their any exceptions due to my disability or will I be forced to work 30 hours?

Thanks in advance, If anyone can help I would be extremely grateful.
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Comments

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 53,808 Disability Gamechanger
    Are you both still claiming Income Support? If so are they aware that your wife works 10 hours per week? There's only a very small earnings disregard when claiming IS of between £5 and £20 per week, after that your IS is reduced £1 for £1 by earnings. 

    When claiming UC there's no minimum amount of hours that you should work. What counts is your earnings. At the moment the AET is £617/month for single people and £988/month for couples. As your partner is a carer then your AET will be £617/month, which means with earnings over that you should be in the light touch group but the AET will change next month when the NMW increases. 

    Are you claiming a disability benefit yourself such as PIP/DLA or ADP?
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • keplar20
    keplar20 Community member Posts: 8 Listener
    Hi, thank you for replying.

    The income support claim is in my wife’s name, they are aware that she is working and have adjusted the payment accordingly.

    I claim PIP myself, highest rate mobility and standard daily living. 

    As advised I was told by the council it might be better to apply for Universal Credit, I start my job in two weeks so may do start the claim then.

    I’m confused as to what AET is and NMW, could you clarify those mean?

    I really do not know much when it comes to Universal Credit such as light touch! 

    Thanks.


  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 53,808 Disability Gamechanger
    Although your wife is the main claimant of the IS claim, you should also be named on that claim because you're living together as a couple. 

    I agree that you will likely be better off claiming UC because while working those amount of hours the IS would end anyway.

    AET is Administrative Earnings Threshold and NMW is National Minimum Wage. You can read more about AET here. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/universal-credit-and-earnings#:~:text=The%20%27Administrative%20Earnings%20Threshold%27%20(,%C2%A31%2C083%20per%20assessment%20period.
     
    Light touch would mean no work requirements so you shouldn't need to attend any appointments after your first appointment. More information here. https://www.entitledto.co.uk/help/claimant-commitment-universal-credit

    As you're also claiming PIP you can report your health condition for UC when you claim and provide a fit note. This will then start the work capability assessment process off. If found to have LCWRA then you will receive extra money from the 4th month of your claim. See link. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/universal-credit-if-you-have-a-disability-or-health-condition-quick-guide/universal-credit-if-you-have-a-disability-or-health-condition#:~:text=When%20you%20make%20a%20claim,Work%20Capability%20Assessment%20(%20WCA%20).
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • keplar20
    keplar20 Community member Posts: 8 Listener
    I may well be named on the IS claim, it’s just because my wife has always dealt with that in the past.

    Apologies in advance but I have so many questions!

    When I apply for UC and declare that I am disabled would I have to undergo a medical assessment? What would the fit note be? 

    I also have two other children, the reason I asked about the hours is I saw this information on the government website which made me believe I have to work 30 hours or more?

    Age between 3 and 12You will be expected to work up to 30 hours a week, or spend up to 30 hours a week on work-related activities such as applying for jobs
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 53,808 Disability Gamechanger
    Yes, if you report your health condition then you will need to have a work capability assessment. Did you read the link I posted above? It gives you all the information there about claiming UC with a health condition. 

    As I advised, providing your earnings are above the AET then you shouldn't be expected to look for more work. Again, it explains that in the link I posted. 
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • Albus_Scope
    Albus_Scope Posts: 3,817 Scope online community team
    Hey @keplar20 and welcome to the community. 

    I can see Poppy is already helping with your queries, but I just wanted to stop in and say hi and congratulations on the new job. :)
    Albus (he/him)

    Online Community Coordinator @ Scope

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    Neurodivergent.
  • chiarieds
    chiarieds Community member Posts: 16,088 Disability Gamechanger
    From the link above about AET & from here: https://data.parliament.uk/DepositedPapers/Files/DEP2023-0791/003.Administrative_and_Conditionality_EarningsV13.0.pdf
    it looks like the AET is currently £677 per month for a single claimant, & £1083 for a couple.
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 53,808 Disability Gamechanger
    chiarieds said:
    From the link above about AET & from here: https://data.parliament.uk/DepositedPapers/Files/DEP2023-0791/003.Administrative_and_Conditionality_EarningsV13.0.pdf
    it looks like the AET is currently £677 per month for a single claimant, & £1083 for a couple.
    For the avoidance of doubt that applies from 10th April, as it increases in line with NMW, which I did advise. At the moment it’s still at the figures I quoted above. 

    The AET is set at both an individual and a household level based on gross
    earnings (earnings before any deductions). From 10 April 2023 the rates are:
    • Single: £677.00
    • Couple: £1083.00
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • keplar20
    keplar20 Community member Posts: 8 Listener
    Thank you all for your help, I have read all the info and have a better understanding of how it works.

    Would anyone know how likely it will be that I will be placed into the LCW category? 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 53,808 Disability Gamechanger
    For the extra money then you would need to be found to have LCWRA. You can see the descriptors here. Only one needs to apply. Please also take note of the manual wheelchair for the mobilising descriptor. https://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/universal-credit-uc/uc-faq/limited-capability-for-work-related-activity#:~:text=LCWRA%20descriptors,reasonably%2C%20be%20worn%20or%20used.&text=(ii)%20repeatedly%20mobilise%2050%20metres,of%20significant%20discomfort%20or%20exhaustion.

    LCW descriptors here and for this you need to score at least 15 points.https://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/universal-credit-uc/uc-faq/limited-capability-for-work
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • keplar20
    keplar20 Community member Posts: 8 Listener
    I’m not aiming for the LCWRA as I’ll be working and not for the extra money, it’s because I am genuinely limited to the amount of hours / money I can earn, 20 hours is the maximum I will be able to manage and I’m worried they will try and force me to do more.
    Am I understanding it correctly? Do I need to do a WCA or will they take it on face value that I’m a bilateral leg amputee and will be limited? 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 53,808 Disability Gamechanger
    As you are limited in the work you can do my advice will be to go through the work capability assessment. Then if anything changes in the future with the AET rules (likely it will later in the year) then if found to have either LCWRA or LCW then you will at least have some peace of mind that you won't be forced to look for more work. 
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • keplar20
    keplar20 Community member Posts: 8 Listener
    Great, thank you so much for your help!
  • chiarieds
    chiarieds Community member Posts: 16,088 Disability Gamechanger
    From the link I gave above, as quoted, 
    ''The AET is set at both an individual and a household level based on gross
    earnings (earnings before any deductions). From 10 April 2023 the rates are:
    • Single: £677.00
    • Couple: £1083.00''
    Then these are the current rates (since last April), which will increase again in April 2024

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 53,808 Disability Gamechanger
    @chiarieds now I feel silly .. duh it is 2024. It has been one of those horrible days for me!! My apologies! 
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • chiarieds
    chiarieds Community member Posts: 16,088 Disability Gamechanger
    No apology needed - it usually takes me a couple of months into the New Year to remember which year it now is! :)
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 53,808 Disability Gamechanger
    chiarieds said:
    No apology needed - it usually takes me a couple of months into the New Year to remember which year it now is! :)
    Thank you. Yes, I'm the same at the start of the year but we are now in March..  :#
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • keplar20
    keplar20 Community member Posts: 8 Listener
    Hi Poppy, just one more question for you!

    I now understand the AET and CET more, for clarification, you mentioned that due to my wife being a carer for our daughter the AET would be for a single person, would her wage still be taken into account for the AET or CET or just mine? For example if she earned £500 a month and myself £1,000, would it be £1500 or just £1,000.

    Thank you.
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 53,808 Disability Gamechanger
    In this case it doesn't really matter because both are over the AET, whether that's single or couples. 
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • keplar20
    keplar20 Community member Posts: 8 Listener
    What about the CET? 

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