Get in touch if your circumstances change

If you get benefits and think that the information we currently hold about your circumstances may be out of date, let your local benefits office know as soon as possible. Failing to report a change in your circumstances can result in you committing benefit fraud.

You can report a change in your circumstances or find out how your benefits might change, by contacting your local benefit office or one of the benefit specific numbers below.

Benefit  Telephone Number
Attendance Allowance 028 9090 6178
Bereavement Service  0800 085 2463
Carer’s Allowance / Carer’s Credit  028 9090 6186
Disability Living Allowance 028 9090 6182

Employment and Support Allowance

(Enquiries and Change of Circumstances)

0300 123 3012

0845 602 7301

Income Support 0800 022 4250
Jobseeker’s Allowance  0800 022 4250
Pension Credit – Enquiries

0300 123 3014

0845 601 8821

State Pension – Enquiries

0300 123 3014

0845 601 8821

Types of changes we need to know about

You must report any change in your circumstances to your local benefit office as soon as it happens, whether you think the change is directly related to your benefits.

Some examples of the changes you need to report include:

  • change of address
  • hospital admission or going into a care home
  • travelling or going abroad
  • getting married, entering into a civil partnership or moving in with a partner
  • getting a new job whatever hours you work or pay you receive
  • getting a pay rise or changes to the hours that you work
  • inheriting or unexpectedly coming into money / capital
  • taking in a lodger
  • no longer being sick or ill
  • leaving school/college
  • volunteering
  • disablement
  • bereavement
  • pregnancy

If you deliberately fail to report a change in your personal circumstances you are treated as having committed benefit fraud. If you're prosecuted for benefit fraud you could be fined or get a prison sentence.

Change of circumstances - Starting Work

Starting paid work or doing voluntary work may affect the benefits you receive or may be entitled to.

Voluntary or paid work

If you start work ,either voluntary or paid, you must tell the office paying your benefit of this change in circumstances.

Benefits that may be affected by starting work Benefits not affected by starting work
Carer's Allowance Attendance Allowance
Employment and Support Allowance  Bereavement Allowance
Housing Benefit Disability Living Allowance
Incapacity Benefit  Industrial Death Benefit
Income Support Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefits
Jobseeker’s Allowance Pneumoconiosis, Byssinosis & Misc. Disease Scheme Benefits
Reduced Earnings Allowance Retirement Allowance
  War Disablement Pension
  War Widow's Pension
  Widowed Mother's Allowance
  Widowed Parent's Allowance
  Widow's Pension
  Workmen's Compensation (Supplementation) Scheme

Carer's Allowance

Work (full time and part time)

You can earn up to £110 per week after deductions have been taken off. If earnings exceed £110 per week Carer's Allowance will stop.

Carer's Allowance Deductions and Allowable Expenses

Deductions are allowed for things like National Insurance contributions, income tax and one half of any money paid towards personal or occupational pension schemes.

If you receive Statutory Maternity Pay or Statutory Sick Pay any amounts received will be treated as earnings, however any allowable expenses may be affected whilst you are not working.

Expenses are allowed for other things you have to pay because they are a necessary part of the job. Expenses are also allowed for the cost of paying someone (not a close relative) to look after a child aged under 16, or the person being looked after, while you are at work. Expenses are allowed for up to a maximum of half the money earned after taking off National Insurance contributions, income tax and one half of any money paid towards personal or occupational pension schemes.

Further details of allowable expenses can be obtained from Disability and Carer’s Service.

Employment and Support Allowance

If you do any work, including voluntary work; or start training and get a training allowance your payment of Employment and Support Allowance may be affected.  

Further details can be obtained from Employment and Support Allowance.

Housing Benefit

If you receive Income Support or Jobseeker's Allowance or Employment and Support Allowance (income related) for 26 weeks you may be entitled to a further four weeks payment of your Housing Benefit. This is known as Housing Benefit Extended Payment; and will be paid automatically to you if you satisfy the qualifying conditions.

Incapacity Benefit

Incapacity Benefit is paid to you if you suffer from the effects of an illness or disability. You are not expected to work or seek work as a condition for receiving benefit. As such, benefit cannot be paid to you if you do start work.

It is recognised, however, that allowing some work may help improve your medical condition and in some cases it can help your chances of a return to the labour market.

Permitted Work and Voluntary Work

If you are receiving Incapacity Benefit you may only work in permitted circumstances.

Permitted work introduces more flexible rules if you want to try paid work while still getting Incapacity Benefit because of illness or disability.

For example you can:

  • work for less than 16 hours a week, on average, and earn no more than £104 a week for 52 weeks
  • work for less than 16 hours a week, on average, and earn up to £104 a week for as long as your illness or disability is considered sufficiently severe that you meet the threshold of incapacity without undergoing a medical assessment
  • work and earn up to £20 a week, at any time, for as long as you are on benefit
  • do supported permitted work and earn no more than £104 a week for as long as you are on benefit

Supported permitted work means work that is supervised by someone who is employed by a public or local authority, or a voluntary organisation, whose job it is to arrange work for people with disabilities. This could be work done in the community or in a sheltered workshop. It also includes work as part of a hospital treatment programme.

You do not need your doctor's approval to start permitted work.

Linking Provisions

If you were getting Incapacity Benefit before taking a job, and leave benefit, you may be able to return to the same rate of Incapacity Benefit if you return to benefit within 104 weeks.

Reduced Earnings Allowance

Reduced Earnings Allowance may be affected if you starting work.

If a member of your family starts work it does not affect Reduced Earnings Allowance.

Change of circumstances - Capital

People's benefit may be changed by any capital they have or inherit. Find out how benefits may be affected by your capital.

How capital affects your benefit

Not all benefits are affected by the amount of capital the customer and their family have. However, title to some benefits can be reduced or removed depending on the amount of capital involved.

"Capital" includes:

  • savings (cash, money in banks, Post Office® and building society accounts etcetera)
  • national savings certificates
  • premium bonds as well as investments (shares etcetera)
  • property and land

Certain types of capital are disregarded, for example, a property which the customer occupies as his home would not count as capital.

The benefits and tax credits listed below are the main ones likely to be affected by capital:

Capital - Income Support/Jobseeker's Allowance

If you claim Income Support or Jobseeker's Allowance, your claim may be affected by your capital.

Customer/Partner

If you and/or your partner have capital over £16,000 you will not qualify for Income Support / Jobseeker's Allowance (Income based).

Capital of £6,000 or less does not affect these benefits. You are required to provide details if you/your partner's capital is over £5,500.

Jobseekers Allowance (Contribution based) is not affected by the amount of capital you or your partner/dependants have.

Any capital between £6,000.01 and £16,000 will involve a reduction in the amount of benefit to which the customer may be entitled to as a weekly income is assumed. For the calculation of the relevant deduction see:

Assumed Income from Capital

Capital held by you and/or your partner
£ 
Weekly Assumed Income from Capital
£

6,000.01 - 6,250  

1
6,250.01 - 6,500 2
6,500.01 - 6,750 3
6,750.01 - 7,000 4
7,000.01 - 7,250 5

7,250.01 - 7,500 

6
7,500.01 - 7,750 7
7,750.01 - 8,000 8
8,000.01 - 8,250 9
8,250.01 - 8,500  10
8,500.01 - 8,750  11
8,750.01 - 9,000 12
9,000.01 - 9,250 13
9,250.01 - 9,500 14
9,500.01 - 9,750 15
9,750.01 - 10,000 16
10,000.01 - 10,250 17
10,250.01 - 10,500 18
10,500.01 - 10,750 19
10,750.01 - 11,000 20
11,000.01 - 11,250 21
11,250.01 - 11,500  22
11,500.01 - 11,750 23
11,750.01 - 12,000 24
12,000.01 - 12,250 25
12,250.01 - 12,500 26
12,500.01 - 12,750 27
12,750.01 - 13,000 28
13,000.01 - 13,250 29
13,250.01 - 13,500 30
13,500.01 - 13,750 31
13,750.01 - 14,000 32
14,000.01 - 14,250 33
14,250.01 - 14,500 34
14,500.01 - 14,750 35
14,750.01 - 15,000  36
15,000.01 - 15,250  37
15,250.01 - 15,500 38
15,500.01 - 15.750 39
15,750.01 - 16,000  40

There are different capital limits for people permanently in care homes.

Assumed Income from Capital - Care homes

Capital held by you and/or your partner
£  
Weekly Assumed Income from Capital
£
10,000.01 - 10.250  1
10,250.01 - 10,500  2
10,500.01 - 10,750 3
10,750.01 - 11,000 4
11,000.01 - 11,250 5
11,250.01 - 11,500 6
11,500.01 - 11,750 7
11,750.01 - 12,000 8
12,000.01 - 12,250 9
12,250.01 - 12,500 10
12,500.01 - 12,750 11
12,750.01 - 13,000 12
13,000.01 - 13,250 13
13,250.01 - 13,500  14
13,500.01 - 13,750 15
13,750.01 - 14,000 16
14,000.01 - 14,250 17
14,250.01 - 14,500 18
14,500.01 - 14,750 19
14,750.01 - 15,000 20
15,000.01 - 15,250 21
15,250.01 - 15,500 22
15,500.01 - 15,750 23
15,750.01 - 16,000 24

Dependent child or young person’s capital

If each dependent child's/young person’s capital is £3,000 or less Income Support / Jobseeker's Allowance (Income based) is not affected.

  • Income Support
  • Jobseeker's Allowance

If a dependent child's/young person’s capital totals more than £3,000 the personal allowance and premiums appropriate to that dependent child/young person will not be paid.

Do not include the child or young person's income when working out the customer's income.

Claims to Income Support awarded from the 6 April 2004 will not include child-related elements because support for children will be provided by Child Tax Credit (CTC). Families already on Income Support in April 2004 who have not already claimed CTC will be moved across to CTC at a future date.

Capital - HS Treatment

How Health Service Treatment may be affected by the capital that you own or inherit.

Capital over £16,000

If you are applying for help with health costs because you are on a low income, you will not qualify for:

  • help with dental charges
  • help with ophthalmic services
  • help with hospital fares

If you and /or your partner have capital over £16,000 (£23,250 if you live permanently in a residential care home or nursing home).

  • Help with health costs

You may still be exempt from a charge due to a medical condition or age. For further information contact the Health Service Charges Adviceline on 0845 850 1166.

Capital - Social Fund

How various Social Fund payments may be affected by the capital you have or may inherit.

Sure Start Maternity Grant

Any capital you or your partner has will have no effect on the amount of Sure Start Maternity Grant due.

Community Care Grant

If you and your partner are under 62 years old a Community Care Grant will be reduced by the amount of any joint capital you have over £500.

If you and your partner is aged 62 or over a Community Care Grant will be reduced by the amount of any joint capital you have over £1,000.

Budgeting Loan

If you and your partner are under 62 years old a Budgeting Loan will be reduced by the amount of any joint capital you have over £1,000.

If you and your partner is aged 62 or over a Budgeting Loan will be reduced by the amount of any joint capital you have over £2,000.

You do not have to be receiving any benefit to apply for a Crisis Loan. If they apply for a Crisis Loan, the full amount of all available resources is taken into account against the loan applied for, including:

Funeral Payment

Any capital you or your partner has will have no effect on the amount of Funeral Payment due to them.

Change of circumstances - Going Abroad

If you are receiving benefits and go abroad, your benefits may be affected.

Benefits while abroad

Short absences for holidays abroad do not affect most benefits. However, your entitlement to certain benefits can change if:

  • you live abroad permanently
  • you live in the EEA, Switzerland or a country which has a reciprocal agreement with the UK

(Going abroad is usually defined as going outside the United Kingdom).

If you want information about receiving your benefits during a temporary or permanent absence, you must tell the Social Security or Jobs & Benefits office.

For State Pension queries:

For other queries please contact:

Overseas Benefits Unit
Network Support Branch
Newtownabbey J&Bo
39-41 Church Road
Newtownabbey
BT36 7LB
  • telephone: 028 9560 6857 and 028 9560 6868

You will need to tell them:

  • your name and National Insurance number or the reference number shown on any correspondence which you received previously
  • your address abroad
  • the date you went abroad or the date you will leave the United Kingdom
  • the method of payment you require
  • whether the absence will be temporary or permanent (if temporary tell them how long it is likely to last)
  • whether your spouse or civil partner and any or all of your children live abroad with you
Benefits affected by going abroad   Benefits not affected by going abroad
Attendance Allowance Industrial Death Benefit
Bereavement Benefits Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
Carer's Allowance  Retirement Allowance
Constant Attendance Allowance  
Disability Living Allowance  
Employment and Support Allowance  
Housing Benefits    
Incapacity Benefit   
Income Support  
Jobseeker's Allowance    
Maternity Allowance    
Over 80's Pension  
Pension Credit    
Reduced Earnings Allowance  
Severe Disablement Allowance  
State Retirement Pension  
Unemployability Supplement   
War Pensions    
Widow's Benefits    

You must tell the Social Security office that pays your benefit that you are going abroad so that they can arrange payment during the absence -if required.

Employment and Support Allowance

If you are receiving Employment and Support Allowance this may be affected if you go away from home.

In some circumstances, you may keep getting Employment and Support Allowance for up to four weeks during temporary trips abroad. This may apply:

  • for some short trips
  • if you have to go abroad to get medical treatment
  • if you live with a member of the armed forces and go overseas with them

If you get Employment and Support Allowance and you plan to go abroad, you must tell the Employment and Support Allowance Centre straight away to check if your benefit will be affected.

If you are able to get Employment and Support Allowance while you are abroad, you can arrange for someone else to get your payment for you while you are away. Or you can be paid when you get back and in some circumstances, you can have it paid to you abroad.

Pension Credit

You should contact the Northern Ireland Pension Centre for information on how temporary or permanent absence abroad affects your Pension Credit

Change of circumstances - Leaving school or college

How leaving school or college affects the benefits you receive or may be entitled to.

Child under 16

A child is treated as being in full-time education until they reach the age of 16 therefore they do not qualify for social security benefits.

The only exception to this is Disability Living Allowance which is paid for a person who has care/mobility needs arising from a disability or illness.

Child age 16-17

16/17 year olds are not entitled to claim benefits as unemployed people as they are guaranteed a place under the Department for the Economy (DfE) Training for Success programme. There are however exceptions to this rule which depend on whether the claim is for Income Support; or Jobseeker's Allowance

Child age 18

A child will not be eligible to receive any benefit until he is treated as having ceased full-time education.

If the child's parent or guardian is receiving Child Benefit this can continue until the relevant Child Benefit end date is reached.

If the child left school to go into work or a training course which then ends before the end date Child Benefit can become payable again, this is because they can still be treated as being in full-time education up to and including the end date.

Parent of child age 16-17

Child Benefit

The customer should write to Child Benefit Office advising them of the date the child left school and what they are currently doing for example Jobskills, full-time work, etcetera.

If the child is waiting for work or a place under the Training for Success programme, Child Benefit, can be paid for up to 20 weeks after the Child Benefit end date as long as the child has registered for work or the Department for the Economy (DfE) Training for Success programme.

The customer must also ask the Child Benefit Office for benefit to continue for this Child Benefit Extension Period.

Child Benefit may start again if the child returns to full-time education, or if work or a Training for Success course ends before the Child Benefit end date, or the end of the Child Benefit Extension Period, but only if the child registers with the Department for the Economy (DfE).

Other Benefits

A decision on whether a customer will continue to be paid an increase for a dependant child who has left school, etcetera will normally depend on whether they are entitled to Child Benefit during the Child Benefit Extension Period.

The customer should advise the paying office immediately of the date the child left school/college.

Failure to do so may result in an overpayment of benefit which they will be liable to repay.

Parent of child age 18

Child Benefit

The customer should contact Child Benefit Office immediately to advise them of the date the child left school etcetera. and what they are doing now for example work, unemployed.

Failure to tell the Child Benefit Office at once will make the customer liable for any resulting overpayment.

Where the child has started full time work the customer will be entitled to Child Benefit up until the Monday after they started work.

Otherwise the customer will continue to receive Child Benefit until the Child Benefit end date after which the young person will be able to claim benefits in their own right.

Other Benefits

A decision on whether the customer will continue to be paid an increase for a dependant child who has left school etcetera will normally depend on whether they continue to be entitled to Child Benefit.

The customer should advise the paying office immediately of the date the child left school/college.

Failure to do so may result in an overpayment of benefit which the customer will be liable to repay.

Student age 19 or over

Entitlement to benefit for students varies according to their circumstances, the course they are following and their income.

There are different kinds of income students can receive:

  • educational grants, bursaries and allowances including contributions
  • payments under deed of covenant
  • student loans
  • charitable or voluntary payments

Due to the complexity of claims from students the information provided is only a guide for customers. No definite decision can be given on entitlement or exclusion.

Change of circumstances - Volunteering and Benefits

If you get benefits and you volunteer, tell your local benefits office as soon as possible. You should report all changes in your circumstances quickly to your benefit paying office.

Volunteering and your particular benefit

You can find out about volunteering and your particular benefit here.

Carer’s Allowance

If you volunteer in Northern Ireland you can still get Carer’s Allowance provided:

  • you still care for a disabled person for at least 35 hours a week
  • they get the right disability benefit

If your volunteering takes you abroad for over four weeks it could affect your Carer’s Allowance. If you are going to volunteer abroad tell the Disability and Carers Service.

Disability Living Allowance and Attendance Allowance

Volunteering in Northern Ireland will not affect your Disability Living Allowance or Attendance Allowance.

Volunteering abroad for less than six months will not affect your Disability Living Allowance or your Attendance Allowance. If you are going to volunteer abroad tell the Disability and Carers Service.

You should also tell the Disability and Carers Service if your care needs or mobility problems change.

Disability and Carers Service Contact Details

  • Carer's Allowance 028 9090 6186
  • Disability Living Allowance 028 9090 6182
  • Attendance Allowance 028 9090 6178

Employment and Support Allowance

You can volunteer and get Employment and Support Allowance as long as you:

  • meet the conditions for getting Employment and Support Allowance
  • can go to any work-focused interviews or medical assessments
  • let the Permitted Work Team in the Social Security Agency know before you start volunteering and tell them about any expenses you may get

Incapacity Benefit

You can volunteer and get Incapacity Benefit as long as you:

  • meet the conditions for getting Incapacity Benefit
  • can go to a work focused interview when you are asked to
  • let the Permitted Work Team in the Social Security Agency know before you start volunteering and tell them about any expenses you may get

Permitted Work Team in the Social Security Agency – Contact for Employment and Support Allowance

  • Telephone: 028 9033 6771

Severe Disablement Allowance

You can volunteer and get Severe Disablement Allowance as long as you:

  • meet the conditions for getting Severe Disablement Allowance
  • let the Permitted Work Team in the Social Security Agency know before you start volunteering and tell them about any expenses you may get

Permitted Work Team in the Social Security Agency – Contact for Incapacity Benefit / Severe Disablement Allowance

  • Telephone: 028 9560 5014

Housing Benefit (help with rent and rates)

You normally get Housing Benefit for help with your rent or rates if you are getting Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Employment and Support Allowance, Pension Credit, or you have a low income.

If you volunteer you can still get Housing Benefit provided you still satisfy the conditions for getting the benefit.  

Remember if you own your home you must tell Housing Benefit Central Unit at Land & Property Services, or if you rent your home you must tell your local Housing Executive office about any volunteering you do, and any expenses or payments you get.

Income Support

You can volunteer and get Income Support as long as you:

  • meet the conditions for getting Income Support
  • can go to a work focused interview when you are asked to
  • let the Social Security or Jobs & Benefits office know before you start, and tell them about any expenses you may get

Jobseeker’s Allowance

You can volunteer and get Jobseeker’s Allowance as long as you:

  • meet the conditions for getting Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • are actively looking for a full-time paid job
  • are available for work or treated as being available for work;
  • are able to go to an interview at 48 hours notice
  • are able to start a job at one week’s notice
  • let the Social Security or Jobs & Benefits office know before you start, and tell them about any expenses you may get
  • Social Security/Jobs & Benefits offices

If you are a lone parent you can receive Jobseeker’s Allowance as long as you:

  • are able to go to an interview at seven days notice
  • are able to start a job at 28 days notice

You must contact your Social Security or Jobs & Benefits office before starting voluntary work to complete a form and, if necessary, amend your Jobseeker’s Agreement. The form is called 'Volwork 1' and you can get it at your Social Security or Jobs & Benefits office.

National Insurance credits

You will usually get National Insurance credits if you are getting a benefit like Employment and Support Allowance or Carer’s Allowance. If you volunteer and continue to get your benefit you will continue to get your National Insurance credits as well.

You won’t get National Insurance credits just because you are a volunteer. But you may get National Insurance credits even if you don’t get benefits. This could be if you are listed as actively looking for, and being free to, work, or if you can’t work because of an illness or disability.

Your entitlement to a carer’s credit, awarded if you are looking after a child, are a foster carer or if you are caring for someone with a disability, will not be affected if you volunteer.

Pension Credit

Being a volunteer in Northern Ireland should not affect your Pension Credit. But, if you go abroad as a volunteer for more than 13 weeks at a time, your Pension Credit could be stopped.

Pension Credit is payable for up to the first 13 weeks of the customer's/partner's absence from Northern Ireland provided all the following conditions apply:

  • the absence is temporary
  • the customer was entitled to Pension Credit immediately before going abroad
  • the absence is not expected to last for more than 52 weeks
  • the other conditions for receiving Pension Credit continue to be satisfied

For general enquiries about pensions, contact:

  • Phone: 0808 100 6165
  • Textphone: 0808 100 1165

Lines are open from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm, Monday to Friday.

Tax Credits

Child Tax Credit

The amount of Child Tax Credit you get is based on your circumstances and income. You may get it, whether you work or not, if you or your partner is responsible for a child or young person who normally lives with you.

Being a volunteer will not change how much Child Tax Credit you get. Any out of pocket expenses you receive will not affect how much Child Tax Credit you get.

Working Tax Credit

You have to be in paid work for at least a set number of hours a week to claim Working Tax Credit. If you or your partner is:

  • aged at least 16 and responsible for a child or young person
  • aged at least 16 and have a disability that makes it harder for you to get a job
  • aged at least 60

The hours you volunteer do not count towards your working hours. Being a volunteer will not change how much Working Tax Credit you get. Any out of pocket expenses you receive will not affect how much Working Tax Credit you get.

Change of circumstances - Disablement

If you are receiving benefits, these may be affected if you or a member of your family are or becomes disabled.

Disablement

The definition of "Disablement" varies depending on the benefit in question.

This information relates to the main benefits likely to be affected if you or a member of your family is or becomes disabled.

Additional information on how disablement can effect indivual beenfits can be found at the following link:

It must be pointed out that the contents are only intended to give a summary and do not identify all qualifying conditions for each benefit; nor does it include information to do with disablement as a result of an injury sustained at work or in the Armed Forces.

Details on these and other issues can be obtained by accessing the advice about the particular benefit.

Disablement: Benefits you may be entitled to or may increase:

  • Attendance Allowance
  • Community Care Grant (Social Fund)
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Employment and Support Allowance
  • Housing Benefit
  • Incapacity Benefit
  • Income Support/Jobseeker's Allowance (Income based)
  • Tax Credit

Change of circumstances - Bereavement

How benefits may be affected following a bereavement. You will find information on how bereavement affects your benefits and how to claim Bereavement Benefit.

What happens after a death?

When a person dies on or after 9 April 2001 the surviving spouse or civil partner may be able to get a Bereavement Payment and either Widowed Parent's Allowance; or Bereavement Allowance.

For all of these benefits the person's late spouse or civil partner must have met the National Insurance contributions conditions.

What to do if your circumstances change

It is important to tell the Bereavement Service if your circumstances change, for example if:

  • you remarry
  • you start to live with your partner as husband and wife or as if you had formed a civil partnership
  • Bereavement Benefits

Bereavement Service

Call the Social Security Agency’s Bereavement Service, free of charge, if the person who has passed away was getting a social security benefit such as State Pension, Attendance Allowance, Employment Support Allowance or Disability Living Allowance. The Bereavement Service offers a single point of contact for reporting a death to the Social Security Agency and also offers access to other benefits that you may be entitled to.  

The Bereavement Service can be easily accessed by calling the freephone number below:

  • phone: 0800 085 2463

How to claim Bereavement Benefits

A separate claim is not needed for each benefit. One claim covers all three of the Bereavement Benefits.

When the death of the late spouse is registered the bereaved person will be given a certificate of registration of death (form BD8). This form is for Social Security purposes only.

To claim Bereavement benefits the bereaved person should fill in the form on the back of the certificate and send or take it to the Bereavement Benefit section or the nearest Social Security or Jobs & Benefit Office. They will then be given a claim form (BB1) which should be completed and sent back as soon as possible.

Change of circumstances - Pregnancy

How being pregnant may affect the benefits which you receive or may be entitled to.

Carer's Allowance

If you are receiving Carer's Allowance any Statutory Maternity Pay or Statutory Sick Pay you receive will be classed as earnings.

Any award of Maternity Allowance, Incapacity Benefit or Employment and Support Allowance will have to be taken into account because these benefits affect the amount of Carer's Allowance which may be paid.

Child Benefit

If you are pregnant your Child Benefit will not be affected.

Disability Living Allowance

Your Disability Living Allowance will not be affected if you are pregnant.

Housing Benefit

Your Housing Benefit will not be affected if you or your partner are pregnant unless there is a change to your income or other benefits.

Income Support/Jobseeker's Allowance

If you or your partner are getting Income Support / Jobseeker's Allowance you can get help with  Health Service Treatments and Healthy Start Vouchers·which can be used to buy milk, fruit and vegetables or infant formula.

If you are an expectant mother's partner and receive Jobseeker's Allowance (Income based) and an increase is paid for the expectant mother any Maternity Allowance or Incapacity Benefit payable will have to be taken into account.

If you are an expectant mother's partner and receive Jobseeker's Allowance (Contribution based), it will not be affected.

Maternity Allowance/Incapacity Benefit/Employment and Support Allowance

If for some reason you or your partner are unable to get Statutory Maternity Pay, (for example, if you are self-employed or have recently changed jobs), you may qualify for Maternity Allowance.

If your employers have refused to pay you Statutory Maternity Pay, you should get form SMP 1 and send it with your claim for Maternity Allowance.

To get Maternity Allowance you must satisfy two conditions, the employment condition and the earnings condition.

If you or your partner do not qualify for either Statutory Maternity Pay or Maternity Allowance you may be able to get Employment and Support Allowance.

If you are already receiving Incapacity Benefit or Employment and Support Allowance you should get form MAT B1 from your doctor or midwife and send it in it as soon as possible.

Severe Disablement Allowance

Severe Disablement Allowance is a benefit payable to you if you have paid insufficient National Insurance Contributions to qualify for Incapacity Benefit or Employment and Support Allowance.

If you are entitled to Statutory Maternity Pay the amount of Severe Disablement Allowance (including any increase for an adult and/or child dependant in payment) will be reduced by the amount of the Statutory Maternity Pay and any balance shall be payable.

Statutory Maternity Pay

If you or your partner work for an employer and are expecting a baby, you may be entitled to Statutory Maternity Pay, whether you intend to return to work or not.

You must tell your employer at least 28 days before you intend to stop work because of your pregnancy.

Statutory Sick Pay

If you are already off work and receiving Statutory Sick Pay, it will stop if you change to Statutory Maternity Pay, but you will still have to tell your employers 28 days before you intend to stop work because of your pregnancy.

Sure Start Maternity Grant

If you or your partner are receiving:

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