Question about benefits with current salary? Calculation is surely wrong? — Scope | Disability forum
Find out how to let us know if you're concerned about another member's safety.

Question about benefits with current salary? Calculation is surely wrong?

I went down to working part time at my job, 16 hours per week a few months back. I live at home with my brothers, in my late fathers house (owned by grandparent but lives far away and we have no contact with) so I dont pay rent. We just pay some bills and council tax. 1 is on UC (has mental health issues) and one has no income at all (both adults, the one with no income has learning difficulties and mental health issues). 
I recently got diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I used the benefit calculator that this page recommended and it said I am only entitled to £12.59 in the form of a council tax reduction. I struggle with going to work, albeit just for those few hours, some days are worse than others. I have been paying tax since swapping to part time, but just realised I should not be paying any according to this tax calculator  so I will claim this back. Once I've got this sorted out so I am not paying tax on my salary I will be earning £600 a month which I am currently using to buy everything like food, clothes, bus fare to work, toiletries, bills, cleaning products, not just for myself but also for my brother who has no income. Im really struggling to make ends meet and dont feel like I have a great quality of life. The house is in a dire state of repair too, with no heating, dodgy electrics, the garage is half fallen down, the whole house needs redecorating, the garden is so overgrown we cannot even get out there. Im at a loss what to do and was wondering if I would be better off not working at all. Am i really not entitled to any benefits? 


  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 24,776 Disability Gamechanger
    edited January 2020
    HI and welcome,

    I'm one of the community champions here on scope and i'm here to help and advise others.

    You mention council tax reduction and then add a link about income tax, that's two completely different things. You wouldn't pay tax on the amount you earn but council tax reduction needs to be claimed from your local council. As all local councils have their own criteria for this then you would need to speak to them but most people have to pay a contribution each month.

    For other benefits then then the only other one is Universal Credit. As you don't pay any rent and i'm assuming you're a single person then a single person standard allowance if you're over 25 would be £317 per month and because you earn £600 per month then your earning will mean you won't be entitled to any UC, unless the brother that's claiming the benefits, if he's claiming either PIP daily living or DLA mid/high rate care then you would be entitled to a very small amount of UC because you could claim the carers element in with this.

    You say your one brother doesn't have any income, does that include no benefits being claimed as well? If so then i'd advise your brother to get some face to face advice for a full benefits check from an advice agency near him and if he's entitled then he will need to claim. Once he's claimed he will be able to contribute towards the bills. Hope this helps.

    Your question about being better off not working, you wouldn't be able to just quit your job and claim a benefit because you could potentially be sanctioned for 26 weeks and you would receive less from claiming benefits then you would from working, even if you weren't sanctioned.
  • EmBB1993
    EmBB1993 Member Posts: 4 Listener
    So I would not get anymore than £317 per month if I quit my job through any benefits even though I have an illness? No he has no benefits, he wont go to claim them he wont leave the house. I guess I will have to continue to work for as long as I can then 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 24,776 Disability Gamechanger
    edited January 2020
    Not at at first no, unfortunately because you'll need to be assessed for limited capability for work. If you're unable to work because of a disability then SSP will be the first thing you need to look at claiming from your employer.

    You could claim UC as well as SSP but your SSP will be counted as income when claiming UC and will reduce it to zero. If you claimed SSP and UC you will need fit notes from your GP to start the limited capability work process off. Once you're assessed and a decision's been made if you're given the higher award you'll receive an extra £336 per month but the waiting period for this to start is 4 months, providing the decision is LCWRA, if it isn't you won't receive any extra money.

    If you have a disability then PIP maybe an option but this isn't awarded based on a diagnosis, it's how those conditions affect your ability to carry out daily activity based on the PIP descriptors. Evidence will be needed to support a claim and a face to face assessment is most likely because most people have them. A successful claim for this could take several months, sometimes longer. See links.

    Your brother if entitled to UC could start a claim online and then request a home visit to verify his identity because this is possible for those that don't leave their home. Also a PIP claim could be started for him too.

  • Joanne_Alumni
    Joanne_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 188 Pioneering
    Hi @EmBB1993,

    If you give up your job because you are too ill to work, and you have a sick note, then you may be entitled to New Style ESA. This would be paid if you have made enough NI contributions for two out of the past three years. If you have been working more hours until recently then you would probably meet this criteria. You can check your NI contributions on the Gov.UK site.

    If your health conditions are impacting your daily life to the extent that you are considering giving up work, it may be worth looking in to claiming Personal Independence Payment (PIP).  It is possible to claim this if you do decide to carry on working.

    Do either of your brothers claim a disability benefit? If not, it may be worth considering this for them as well to try and increase the household income.

    You mentioned Council Tax Reduction and it sounds like it would be worth making a claim for that now. It might be worth contacting your Local Council to see if they have a Welfare Rights team that can help you.

    You are doing the right thing claiming back your tax if you feel that you have been overpaid.

    It is a difficult decision to give up a job, and you will almost certainly not be able to replace your wage with benefits. It is important to bear in mind other things as well such as pension contributions and the positive, social aspects of going to work.

    It is important to try and get face to face advice before making such an important decision. I would start with your Local Authority or look on Advice Local  to try and find someone that could help.

    I hope this helps  :)


Do you need advice on your energy costs?

Scope’s Disability Energy Support service is open to any disabled household in England or Wales in which one or more disabled people live. You can get free advice from an expert adviser on managing energy debt, switching tariffs, contacting your supplier and more. Find out more information by visiting our
Disability Energy Support webpage.
Complete our feedback form and tell us how we can make the community better.