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There’s a limit on the total amount of benefit that most people aged 16 to 64 can get. This is called the Benefit Cap. How much you get for certain benefits may go down to make sure the total you get isn’t more than the cap amount. The cap amount and the benefits that are affected by the cap changed on 7 November 2016.


How much is the new benefit cap?

  • £384.62 per week (£20,000 a year) if you are a lone parent or in a couple (with or without children)
  • £257.69 per week (£13,400 a year) if you are single and you don’t have children, or your children don’t live with you
     

How is the Benefit Cap calculated?

The cap applies to the total amount that you, your partner and any children living with you, get from the following benefits:
• Bereavement Allowance
• Child Benefit
• Child Tax Credit
• Employment and Support Allowance (unless you get the ‘support’ component)
• Housing Benefit
• Incapacity Benefit
• Income Support
• Jobseeker’s Allowance
• Maternity Allowance
• Severe Disablement Allowance
• Widowed Parent’s Allowance
• Universal Credit (unless you’ve had a work capability assessment and aren’t fit for work)

Who is not affected by The Benefit Cap?


You’re not affected by the cap if anyone in your household qualifies for Working Tax Credit or gets any of the following benefits:

  • Armed Forces Compensation Scheme
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Carer's Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Employment and Support Allowance (with support component)
  • Guardian's Allowance
  • Industrial Injuries Benefits
  • Personal Independence Payment
  • Universal Credit payment for ‘limited capability for work and work-related activity’
  • War pensions, War Widow’s or War Widower’s Pension

What should I do if I am affected by the cap?

The cap is applied by reducing the amount of Housing Benefit you will receive. If you are concerned about paying your rent based on the reduced amount you should contact Winchester City Council or one of the agencies detailed below.

An officer will talk you through the options available to you; this may mean looking at how you can manage your money more efficiently, look at moving to another, cheaper home or finding work.

Getting Help

Winchester City Council is working with the Department of Work and Pensions, Job Centre Plus and Citizens Advice.

If you have any concerns about how your benefits are changing either now or in the future please contact Winchester City Council or one of the other agencies in your area

For general advice about what help is available through Make Money Work Benefits Section Winchester City Council - 01962 848298
benefits@winchester.gov.uk (subject - ‘Make Money Work’)
To get advice on your benefits or to talk about your claim for Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Support Benefits Section Winchester City Council – 01962 848539
benefits@winchester.gov.uk
For benefits, debt and/or money management advice Citizens Advice Winchester
07845 694030, sarah@cawinchesterdistrict.org.uk
For helping with training and/or finding work Job Centre Plus Winchester
01962 745232
If you live in a Council property and are having difficulties paying your rent or have rent arrears Income Services Team Winchester City Council – 01962 484205
housingincome@winchester.gov.uk
To get help in a crisis Hampshire Local Welfare Assistance
0300 330 1150
To talk about your Council Tax Account Revenues Team Winchester City Council 01962 848288
Counciltax@winchester.gov.uk
To report antisocial behaviour, changes to tenancies etc Tenancy Services Team Winchester City Council 01962 848197
housingtenancy@winchester.gov.uk