Help with finding work
You can get help to gain new skills, find a job or stay in work from a range of organisations, including JobCentres, careers services and voluntary organisations.
Jobs and Benefits Offices/JobCentres
The Department for Employment and Learning is responsible for the national network of Jobs and Benefits Offices/JobCentres. These give skilled advice at every stage of your search for a job and make sure you know which benefits or allowances you're entitled to claim. They can also support you if you're concerned about the impact of your disability on your existing job.
Your local Jobs and Benefits Offices/JobCentres can help and advise you regardless of your situation - even if you don't have any work experience or if you haven't worked for a long time.
Advisers for people receiving incapacity benefits
Most Jobs and Benefits offices/JobCentres have a specialist adviser who can support you if you are claiming incapacity benefits or refer you to further specialist help.
Steps to Work
Steps to Work (StW) offers a number of different choices around work related activities that can be fitted to suit your needs when it comes to finding you employment.
Pathways to Work
If you are claiming incapacity benefits for the first time, or are claiming again after a break in receiving benefit, you will automatically be considered for Pathways to Work as a condition of getting benefit. Incapacity benefits include:
- Employment and Support Allowance
- Incapacity Benefit
- Income Support on the grounds of incapacity
- Income Support while you are appealing against a decision that you are not incapable of work
- Severe Disablement Allowance
Pathways to Work can help people who are claiming incapacity benefits to start or return to paid work. The service offers individual support and access to a wide range of help.
Work schemes and programmes
If you have a disability that affects the kind of work you can do, you may be eligible to join some of the many programmes open to people who have been unemployed for some time.
Working and receiving disability and incapacity benefits
Disability Living Allowance
Disability Living Allowance is a benefit that can be paid whether you are in or out of work or training, providing you have a level of care or mobility needs which meets the entitlement conditions. If you receive Disability Living Allowance and are about to start or return to work, your Disability Living Allowance will remain the same as long as your care and/or your mobility needs have not changed.
However, if you are starting or returning to work or training because your care and/or mobility needs have changed and you have not already reported this change to the Department for Social Development, then you must report it so that your benefit award can be reviewed and, if necessary, a new decision made.
This could result in either an increase or a decrease in the amount of Disability Living Allowance you are entitled to.
Employment and Support Allowance and Incapacity Benefit - 'Permitted Work'
If you receive Employment and Support Allowance or Incapacity Benefit, you may be able to do some limited work. This is called Permitted Work. If you get Employment and Support Allowance or Incapacity Benefit and a wage, this could affect income-related benefits you receive, like Housing Benefit or Rate Relief.
- 'Permitted Work' - working while claiming Employment and Support Allowance
- 'Permitted Work' - working while claiming Incapacity Benefit