ESA - what years they use? — Scope | Disability forum

ESA - what years they use?

susanshaun Member Posts: 1 Listener
Could you  tell me what years they use for esa contribution 
And do class 1 credits  count


  • steve51
    steve51 Member Posts: 7,153 Disability Gamechanger
  • Pippa_Alumni
    Pippa_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 5,793 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @susanshaun, and welcome! Would you like to tell us a bit more so we can try and help?
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 29,703 Disability Gamechanger

    There's 2 conditions to be able to claim contributions based ESA or New style ESA as it's now called.
    • First contribution condition - in one of the last two complete tax years, you must have paid Class 1 or 2 contributions on relevant earnings at the lower earnings limit for at least 26 weeks. This means you must have worked for at least 26 weeks of the last two complete tax years; and
    • Second contribution condition - in both of the last two complete tax years, you must have paid or been credited with, Class 1 or 2 contributions to the value of 50 times the lower earnings limit.

    Based on your question, receiving just NI credits will not qualify you to receive New style ESA. You must have worked for at least 1 year in the 2 years before your claim. For claims now it's years 2016/2017 and 2017/2018.

    Have you previously worked in the last 2 years or have you been claiming a benefit?
  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,622 Pioneering
    Poppy's answer covers this I hope! If you claim this year (2019) the 2 tax years to look at are 2016/17 and 2017/18.

    Class 1 or Class 2 credits can help for the second condition, but for the first condition you need to have actual contributions in one of the last 2 complete tax years. That means, as Poppy says, that you need to have been working and have earned at least the lower earnings limit in at least 26 weeks of one of the tax years. They don't have to be consecutive weeks, but they do have to fall all in the one tax year.

    The contribution conditions can be relaxed so that contributions paid in any one tax year are enough (even if it was longer ago): for example, if you have been getting carer's allowance in 2017/18 that would relax the conditions.

    However, if you've already had one lot of contributory ESA and that has run out because you are not in the support group, there are special rules before you can have another lot of contributory ESA. You have to have a break in your limited capability for work (a break in your ESA entitlement of more than 12 weeks is enough), and then if you can use at least one later tax year than before, you could requalify.

    You can look at your NI record online to help you see where you stand.

    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland


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