Can I Claim Benefit, Can I Claim Benefit, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council, what benefits can i


Can I Claim Benefit?

You can make a claim for Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction if:

  • You pay rent to a private landlord, housing association, or a council property. But you cannot claim Housing Benefit if you rent from close relatives or the landlord also lives in the same property. A close relative is a parent/step parent or sibling/step sibling. However, if the relative has a commercial tenancy agreement (ie they are a landlord who has let properties previously) then you may be able to claim
  • You have to pay Council Tax on your home. But if you live in a property that is band E or higher you will only be paid up to the amount for a band D property
  • Your savings are less than 16,000 for Housing Benefit and 6000 for Council Tax Reduction applications
  • You work full time or part time (employed or self-employed) and get a low wage
  • You get Benefit or Tax Credit managed by the Department for Work and Pensions, the Inland Revenue or any other low income.

The rules on claiming Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction for self-employed people, students, people from abroad and people who have savings are different to those who get Benefit or Pensions.

There are also different rules for people who have adult children or adults who are not boarders/lodgers or joint tenants. You can find more information on all of the above situations in our related downloads.

How Much Benefit Could I Get?

This is based on the amount of income and savings you have. The more you have the less you get. When we work out your Benefit we take into account:

  • How much money you have coming in each week

Working age – there will be a cap on the amount of benefits that you can get. The Benefit Cap forms part of the Welfare Reform Changes that came into force from April 2013. There are a number of benefits that are included in the Benefit Cap as well as a number of benefits and circumstances that will exclude you from having the cap applied. The Benefit Cap factsheet in Related downloads can explain this further.

If you are not excluded from the benefit amount cap, it will be set at:

  • 500 per week for couples and lone parents; or
  • 350 per week for single adults.
  • How much you have in savings and investments
  • Who lives in your household and their circumstances
  • How much rent and Council Tax you have to pay
  • Whether you are of pension age or working age
  • How many rooms you need for your household (Housing Benefit only).

Renting from South Essex Homes or Housing Associations

Working age – the amount that you are awarded for Housing Benefit depends on the number of rooms you are allowed for your family circumstances, this is known as Size Criteria . Size Criteria forms part of the Welfare Reform Changes that came into force from April 2013. If you are considered to have:

  • 1 extra bedroom you will have a 14% reduction on your Housing Benefit
  • 2 or more extra bedrooms you will have a 25% reduction to your Housing Benefit

You will have to make up the difference yourself. There are some groups of people that are excluded from having the size criteria applied to their claim. For further information about these groups of people please see the Size Criteria Factsheet 2014 in Related Downloads.

Renting from a Private Landlord

If you are working age or pension age the amount you get depends on the Local Housing Allowance rate for the size property you are claiming for. The rates and are updated yearly and can be found in the LHA Rates 2017/2018 Poster in Related Downloads.

Payment on Two Homes

Housing Benefit is normally only paid for one home at a time. However, there are some exceptions where the council may consider paying benefit on two homes. These exceptions are:

  • You have moved into rented accommodation due to fear of violence
  • You are a student/trainee, one of a couple and have to live in separate rented accommodation
  • You have a large family and the council has housed you in two properties
  • You have moved to a new home which you have to pay rent for, but still have to pay rent for a period of time on the old property. This is known as unavoidable overlapping liability.

For further information on payment on two homes please read the Payment on Two Homes leaflet in Related Downloads.

Calculating your Entitlement

To find out an accurate assessment of what you could be entitled to please use the Entitled To Benefit Calculator. Not only will it calculate what you are currently entitled to based on your circumstances but it will also calculate whether you will be better off in work and how Universal Credit will affect you once active in the area.


How To Survive as a Newly Single Parent – Scary Mommy, what benefits can i


How To Survive as a Newly Single Parent

What benefits can i claim as a single parent

When you get divorced, a lot changes. I admit, that’s an understatement. A whole lot changes. If you have children, forget the new chapter bullshit; you’re in a new book altogether. Wait. Scratch that. You’re in a different library, in a foreign country. The people here don’t speak the same language, the books aren t organized like they were in your old house of literature and you can’t seem to find the damn directory anywhere.

Shit. This single parent thing is legit. Survival requires a skill set you most likely have either: a) lost, b) never used, or c) didn t have in the first place. From things like clogged sinks and lawns needing mowed, to instantly being placed in the dual role of good cop and bad cop, the tasks a single parent handles on a day-to-day basis put an air traffic controller’s job to shame.

Success, however, can be accomplished, I promise. Should a person equip themselves adequately, single parenting can actually be somewhat appealing. Swear to God.

Here are some things you ll need to come out on the other side of solo childrearing with (most of) your mental faculties intact, a smile on your face and only an average amount of therapy bills

1. A babysitter. Preferably one with no social life, so when you call her from your closet floor at 6 p.m. in tears, desperate for some “you time,” she’ll be right there.

2. A back-up babysitter. And at least one more back-up for the back-up. This is serious stuff. Criteria for a quality babysitter ranges widely depending on age and skills of your children. The older they get, the less important things like “speaks English” and “over 16” are.

3. Membership to a wine club. Or a discount liquor store. Or both! You think I’m kidding. I’m not.

4. A single friend of the same gender and near your age range. When you finally get a minute to yourself, have managed to find clothing that is not for work, “exercise” attire, or covered with last night s dinner and this morning’s breakfast, and still have the energy left over to hit the town, you’re going to want a wingman/woman. Choose wisely. Different friends, different crowds. ‘Nuff said.

5. A friend with benefits. There are going to be times when you, uh, would like some um, needs met. Unless you’re down with random hook-ups or have (equally unwisely) jumped back into a committed relationship, you might want to have a person on call with whom to handle this business. Just be careful. Don’t go falling in love and shit. Keep it together. Business is business, people.

6. A great group of supportive friends. Don’t blow it by being the party pooper all the time there, Debbie Downer. They have problems too. Listen and be supportive for them just as often (if not more frequently) than you bring your latest crisis to their attention.

7. Good neighbors. Ones you can look in the face the morning after a night out and who will either politely claim they did not hear you yelling at your children last night around 8 p.m., or, heard it, and were over in within five minutes to play backup.

8. Single parent friends and networks. Don’t know any? Try MeetUp. Seriously. These people will be absolutely essential to your feeling like anything other than a reject of the Members Only Club to which all your married peeps belong.

9. A virtual, cloud-based calendar shared with your ex spouse. Put everything possibly related to the kids and their whereabouts here. You can’t lose it, it’s highly accessible and it’s free. If you set reminders, you can’t forget about appointments (easily) and you can “communicate” with your ex sans contention. Well maybe, so long as you leave the sarcasm out of the comments section. Try hard. It’s possible, so I hear.

10. A sense of humor. Don’t have one? GET ONE. NOW. The only way to make this drama into less of a horror flick and more of an action parody is to be able to laugh, often, at yourself and your situation.

So quit whining already. The credits will be rolling before you know it, take off those pouty pants, get yourself together and hit the road, running. You can do it.


VA taking guesswork out of filing for benefits by requiring forms, what benefits can i


VAntage Point

What benefits can i claim as a single parent

VAntage Point

Official Blog of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

VA taking guesswork out of filing for benefits by requiring forms

A new way to file

What benefits can i claim as a single parent

What benefits can i claim as a single parent

A couple years after I separated from the military, a retired chief at my local The American Legion post told me I should look into filing an increase on one of my disabilities. At that time, my disability was causing me increased pain and she was concerned I was not being compensated appropriately.

At first I ignored her, but with more prompting I went onto VA’s website and searched for the form to file an increase on my disability compensation. Finding none, I went back to the chief and she found me a local service officer who wrote on a piece of paper that I wanted to file an increase for my service-connected disability, put it in an envelope, and dropped it in the mail.

I was stunned. For weeks, I had searched for a form that did not exist.

Shortly after that, I started working for a Veterans service organization helping other Veterans appeal their claims. Like the service officer who had helped me, I would advise Veterans to write what they were appealing on a piece of paper and mail it in. Many of them found it confusing.

“What do I write?” they would ask. Or, “There’s really no form?” Or my favorite, “Even the DMV requires me to fill out a form for a driver’s license.”

The confusion Veterans, their families and survivors felt in the claims process was a major reason why I came to work at VA in 2011. I had ideas and wanted to be a part of the change to help Veterans like myself and husband. More importantly, I wanted to communicate those changes to you.

Nearly four years later, I am amazed at the changes that have occurred. For instance, Veterans no longer have to drop their claims in the mail and can instead file online, our claims processors can now work your claim from start to finish electronically and Veterans can automatically add dependents online. And starting today, we are making it easier to file a claim. By using standardized forms – much like applying for a driver’s license – you won’t have to wonder which form to use, or which one is best for you. There is now only one form for filing each benefit – compensation, pension and dependency indemnity compensation and one form for submitting an appeal for a compensation claim.

Here are two major changes we want you to know:

First, when you file a claim, you must use one of these forms:

  • Veterans filing compensation claims should still use eBenefits. It continues to be the fastest and easiest way to file a claim for compensation. In fact, the form is already built into the system.
  • If you prefer not to file online you must complete and submit VA Form 21-526EZ,Application for Disability Compensation and Related Compensation Benefits, to VA
  • Wartime Veterans filing pension claims must complete and mail VA Form 21-527EZ, Application for Pension
  • Survivors filing for dependency and indemnity compensation (DIC), survivors pension, and accrued benefits must be filed on VA Form 21-534EZ, Application for DIC, Death Pension, and/or Accrued Benefits

What benefits can i claim as a single parent

Visit explore.va.gov for more information on using standard forms to file a claim.

Second, if you plan on appealing your claim’s decision, VA will provide you an easy-to-understand form that allows VA to quickly determine why you disagree with the decision. This is called the Standard Notice of Disagreement, or VA Form 21-0958. If you receive a compensation decision on or after March 24, you will have to use this form if you want to appeal. Those wanting to appeal pension and survivors benefits are not required to use the standard NOD at this time.

But wait, those forms aren’t new!

You’re right. VA has used these forms for years, but they were optional. In that time, we’ve seen how use of these forms has gone a long way in removing confusion and easing processing delays in the claims process.

Finally, for Veterans and survivors who want to file a claim, but need more time to gather information, we’ve standardized what used to be known as an informal claim by using a new intent to file a claim process. This basically means you or your representative can submit information, including what general benefit type you are seeking (i.e., compensation, pension, or survivors benefits) to preserve an effective date for benefits while you take up to one year to gather the evidence necessary to support your claim and complete the required application form. This process is completely optional. If you already have the information you need to file a formal claim, you should file the formal claim instead of using the intent to file a claim process.

The Intent to File may be submitted in one of four ways:

  1. Through your accredited Veterans Service Organization, which can submit it electronically on your behalf
  2. Electronically via eBenefits by initiating and completing the personal information page, and saving (but not submitting) the application
  3. Completing and mailing the paper VA Form 21-0966, Intent to File a Claim for Compensation and/or Pension, or Survivors Pension and/or DIC to VA
  4. Informing a VA call center representative over the phone or a public contact representative in person at a VA regional office

This change allows VA to award increased benefits retroactive to the date of medical treatment as long as you submit your intent to file within one year of your treatment and the required claim form is filed within the same year as your intent to file.

There’s still more work to do, and we have more ideas, but everyday we’re working hard to improve your experience at VA. These forms will help take out the guess work so many of you, me included, have experienced.

Editor s note: Still have questions? Visit explore.va.gov for more information on using standard forms to file a claim.

Cat Trombley is a public affairs specialist with the Veterans Benefits Administration. Prior to working for VA, she was an assistant director at a Veteran service organization and represented Veterans before the Board of Veterans’ Appeals. She is also an Air Force Veteran and married to a Marine Corps Veteran.


Advice and Support for Single Dads: Financial, what benefits can i claim as a single


Financial Advice

The following pages will give you basic information on benefits, entitlements and maintenance for single parents. We have also listed useful organisations who will be able to give you further information.

Income Support

What is Income Support?

This is extra money to help people on a low income.

It is for people who don’t have to sign on as unemployed.

This could be if you are:

  • sick or disabled
  • a lone parent responsible for a child under 12 years of age
  • a carer, or
  • registered blind.

Can I get Income Support?

It is for people who:

  • are 16 to 59 years old
  • have a low income
  • work less than 16 hours a week
  • are not in full-time study
  • do not get Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • do not have savings above £16,000, and
  • live in Great Britain

Employment and Support Allowance

What is Employment and Support Allowance?

Employment and Support Allowance replaced Incapacity Benefit and Income Support, paid because of an illness or disability, for new claims from 27 October 2008. If you are currently receiving these benefits you will continue to receive them, so long as you continue to satisfy the entitlement conditions.

Although, Employment and Support Allowance will initially be for new customers only, you will be fully eligible for the work-focused help which will be available with the Employment and Support Allowance and can access this on a voluntary basis.

Employment and Support Allowance is a new way of helping people with an illness or disability to move into work, if they are able.

There is evidence which shows that people are better off in work, not only financially, but in terms of their health and well-being, their self-esteem and the future prospects for themselves and their family.

Employment and Support Allowance offers you personalised support and financial help, so that you can engage in appropriate work, if you are able.

It gives you access to a specially trained personal adviser and a wide range of further services including employment, training and condition management support, to help you manage and cope with your illness or disability in a work context.

Central to Employment and Support Allowance is the new medical assessment called the Work Capability Assessment which assesses what you can do, rather than what you can’t, and identifies the health related support you might need.

Most people claiming Employment and Support Allowance will be expected to take appropriate steps to help prepare for work, including attending a series of work-focused interviews with their personal adviser.

Under Employment and Support Allowance if you have an illness or disability that severely affects your ability to work, you will get increased financial support and will not be expected to prepare for a return to work; however you can volunteer to do so if you want to.

Tax credits are payments from the government. If you’re responsible for at least one child or young person who normally lives with you, you may qualify for Child Tax Credit. If you work, but earn low wages, you may qualify for Working Tax Credit.

Who can get tax credits?

Nine out of ten families with children get tax credits, but you don’t need to have children to qualify. You may also qualify if you are working and earning low pay.

How much do you get?

The amount of tax credits you get depends on things like:

  • how many children you have living with you
  • whether you work – and how many hours you work
  • if you pay for childcare
  • if you or any child living with you has a disability
  • if you’re aged 50 plus and are coming off benefits

Your payments also depend on your income. The lower your income, the more tax credit you can get.

Mr and Mrs Khan both work full-time. Between them, they earn about £25,000 a year. They have three children. They get about £87 a week in tax credits.

If their income was higher, and they earned about £50,000 a year, they’d get about £10 a week instead.

Jon Barry is aged 30, not married and lives alone. He works full-time and earns £10,000 a year. He gets about £24 a week in tax credits.

How tax credits work

If you’re married or living with a partner you’ll need to make a joint claim for tax credits. You can only make a single claim if you don’t have a partner.

The Tax Credit Office pay tax credits directly into your bank, building society, Post Office® or National Savings account if it accepts Direct Payment – either weekly or every four weeks.

Who gets the payments?

If you’re both working and you both qualify for Working Tax Credit, you can decide who’ll get the payments.

If you’re claiming Child Tax Credit and you’re in a couple you need to decide which one of you is the children’s main carer. If you’re the main carer then the money will be paid to you.

How tax credits payments work

The tax credits payments you receive are based on your current personal circumstances and your income from the tax year that ended on the 5 April 2009.

If you’re making a new claim for tax credits your payments will usually run from the date of your claim to the end of the tax year. For example, if you make a claim on 10 November 2009, your payments will be worked out from that date until 5 April 2010.

Each year during April, May and June the Tax Credit Office write to you asking you to:

  • check the information they have about your personal circumstances
  • confirm the income you received in the year that has just ended
  • renew your claim

This helps the Tax Credit Office to check that the payments they have made to you were correct. It also allows them to base your payments for the year ahead on the right amount of income.

Sometimes you will have been paid too much or not enough. If this happens the Tax Credit Office will make an adjustment to make sure that your payments are correct. Any payments they make from 6 April 2010 to the date on which you renew your claim are temporary or provisional and if you don’t renew, you may be asked to pay them back.

Changes at home and work

If your circumstances change it can affect the amount of money you should be getting. So please contact the Tax Credit Office as soon as possible to tell them about any changes.

Contact the Tax Credit Office

You can contact the Tax Credit Helpline on 0845 300 3900 or textphone 0845 300 3909 open from 8.00 am to 8.00 pm seven days a week except Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day.

You may be able to get Child Benefit if any of the following apply:

  • your child is under 16
  • your child is over 16 and in education or training that qualifies for Child Benefit
  • your child is 16 or 17, has left education or training that qualifies for Child Benefit and is registered for work, education or training with an approved body

You can get Child Benefit even if your child doesn’t live with you. However, if they live with someone else, you can only get Child Benefit if:

  • you pay towards the upkeep of your child
  • what you pay is at least the same as the amount of Child Benefit you get for your child
  • the person bringing up your child is not getting Child Benefit for them – if you and another person both claim Child Benefit for the same child, only one of you can get it

You can also get Child Benefit for a child even if you are not their parent, but you have to be responsible for them to qualify.

How much Child Benefit will you get?

There are two separate amounts, with a higher amount for your eldest (or only) child. You get £20.00 a week for your eldest child and £13.20 a week for each of your other children.

How is Child Benefit paid?

Child Benefit can be paid into any bank, building society, or National Savings Investments (NS I) account that accepts Direct Payment. It’s usually paid every four weeks, but it can be paid weekly if you are getting Income Support, Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, income related Employment and Support Allowance or if you are a single parent.

Child Maintenance Options provides impartial information and support to help both parents make informed choices about child maintenance.

The fact that they are impartial means they are there to help both parents and aren’t biased towards any one way of arranging child maintenance.

They can help you for example:

  • if you’re separating from the other parent or are not living with them and you need to set up a child maintenance arrangement
  • if you’re thinking of switching from a private agreement to an arrangement using the Child Support Agency (CSA), or the other way round
  • if your child maintenance arrangement has broken down or is not working as you’d like it to.

If you’re a guardian, relative or friend, or if you have a professional interest in finding out more about child maintenance, they may also be able to help you.


Can I Claim Benefit, Can I Claim Benefit, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council, what benefits can i


Can I Claim Benefit?

You can make a claim for Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction if:

  • You pay rent to a private landlord, housing association, or a council property. But you cannot claim Housing Benefit if you rent from close relatives or the landlord also lives in the same property. A close relative is a parent/step parent or sibling/step sibling. However, if the relative has a commercial tenancy agreement (ie they are a landlord who has let properties previously) then you may be able to claim
  • You have to pay Council Tax on your home. But if you live in a property that is band E or higher you will only be paid up to the amount for a band D property
  • Your savings are less than 16,000 for Housing Benefit and 6000 for Council Tax Reduction applications
  • You work full time or part time (employed or self-employed) and get a low wage
  • You get Benefit or Tax Credit managed by the Department for Work and Pensions, the Inland Revenue or any other low income.

The rules on claiming Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction for self-employed people, students, people from abroad and people who have savings are different to those who get Benefit or Pensions.

There are also different rules for people who have adult children or adults who are not boarders/lodgers or joint tenants. You can find more information on all of the above situations in our related downloads.

How Much Benefit Could I Get?

This is based on the amount of income and savings you have. The more you have the less you get. When we work out your Benefit we take into account:

  • How much money you have coming in each week

Working age – there will be a cap on the amount of benefits that you can get. The Benefit Cap forms part of the Welfare Reform Changes that came into force from April 2013. There are a number of benefits that are included in the Benefit Cap as well as a number of benefits and circumstances that will exclude you from having the cap applied. The Benefit Cap factsheet in Related downloads can explain this further.

If you are not excluded from the benefit amount cap, it will be set at:

  • 500 per week for couples and lone parents; or
  • 350 per week for single adults.
  • How much you have in savings and investments
  • Who lives in your household and their circumstances
  • How much rent and Council Tax you have to pay
  • Whether you are of pension age or working age
  • How many rooms you need for your household (Housing Benefit only).

Renting from South Essex Homes or Housing Associations

Working age – the amount that you are awarded for Housing Benefit depends on the number of rooms you are allowed for your family circumstances, this is known as Size Criteria . Size Criteria forms part of the Welfare Reform Changes that came into force from April 2013. If you are considered to have:

  • 1 extra bedroom you will have a 14% reduction on your Housing Benefit
  • 2 or more extra bedrooms you will have a 25% reduction to your Housing Benefit

You will have to make up the difference yourself. There are some groups of people that are excluded from having the size criteria applied to their claim. For further information about these groups of people please see the Size Criteria Factsheet 2014 in Related Downloads.

Renting from a Private Landlord

If you are working age or pension age the amount you get depends on the Local Housing Allowance rate for the size property you are claiming for. The rates and are updated yearly and can be found in the LHA Rates 2017/2018 Poster in Related Downloads.

Payment on Two Homes

Housing Benefit is normally only paid for one home at a time. However, there are some exceptions where the council may consider paying benefit on two homes. These exceptions are:

  • You have moved into rented accommodation due to fear of violence
  • You are a student/trainee, one of a couple and have to live in separate rented accommodation
  • You have a large family and the council has housed you in two properties
  • You have moved to a new home which you have to pay rent for, but still have to pay rent for a period of time on the old property. This is known as unavoidable overlapping liability.

For further information on payment on two homes please read the Payment on Two Homes leaflet in Related Downloads.

Calculating your Entitlement

To find out an accurate assessment of what you could be entitled to please use the Entitled To Benefit Calculator. Not only will it calculate what you are currently entitled to based on your circumstances but it will also calculate whether you will be better off in work and how Universal Credit will affect you once active in the area.


How To Survive as a Newly Single Parent – Scary Mommy, what benefits can i


How To Survive as a Newly Single Parent

What benefits can i claim as a single parent

When you get divorced, a lot changes. I admit, that’s an understatement. A whole lot changes. If you have children, forget the new chapter bullshit; you’re in a new book altogether. Wait. Scratch that. You’re in a different library, in a foreign country. The people here don’t speak the same language, the books aren t organized like they were in your old house of literature and you can’t seem to find the damn directory anywhere.

Shit. This single parent thing is legit. Survival requires a skill set you most likely have either: a) lost, b) never used, or c) didn t have in the first place. From things like clogged sinks and lawns needing mowed, to instantly being placed in the dual role of good cop and bad cop, the tasks a single parent handles on a day-to-day basis put an air traffic controller’s job to shame.

Success, however, can be accomplished, I promise. Should a person equip themselves adequately, single parenting can actually be somewhat appealing. Swear to God.

Here are some things you ll need to come out on the other side of solo childrearing with (most of) your mental faculties intact, a smile on your face and only an average amount of therapy bills

1. A babysitter. Preferably one with no social life, so when you call her from your closet floor at 6 p.m. in tears, desperate for some “you time,” she’ll be right there.

2. A back-up babysitter. And at least one more back-up for the back-up. This is serious stuff. Criteria for a quality babysitter ranges widely depending on age and skills of your children. The older they get, the less important things like “speaks English” and “over 16” are.

3. Membership to a wine club. Or a discount liquor store. Or both! You think I’m kidding. I’m not.

4. A single friend of the same gender and near your age range. When you finally get a minute to yourself, have managed to find clothing that is not for work, “exercise” attire, or covered with last night s dinner and this morning’s breakfast, and still have the energy left over to hit the town, you’re going to want a wingman/woman. Choose wisely. Different friends, different crowds. ‘Nuff said.

5. A friend with benefits. There are going to be times when you, uh, would like some um, needs met. Unless you’re down with random hook-ups or have (equally unwisely) jumped back into a committed relationship, you might want to have a person on call with whom to handle this business. Just be careful. Don’t go falling in love and shit. Keep it together. Business is business, people.

6. A great group of supportive friends. Don’t blow it by being the party pooper all the time there, Debbie Downer. They have problems too. Listen and be supportive for them just as often (if not more frequently) than you bring your latest crisis to their attention.

7. Good neighbors. Ones you can look in the face the morning after a night out and who will either politely claim they did not hear you yelling at your children last night around 8 p.m., or, heard it, and were over in within five minutes to play backup.

8. Single parent friends and networks. Don’t know any? Try MeetUp. Seriously. These people will be absolutely essential to your feeling like anything other than a reject of the Members Only Club to which all your married peeps belong.

9. A virtual, cloud-based calendar shared with your ex spouse. Put everything possibly related to the kids and their whereabouts here. You can’t lose it, it’s highly accessible and it’s free. If you set reminders, you can’t forget about appointments (easily) and you can “communicate” with your ex sans contention. Well maybe, so long as you leave the sarcasm out of the comments section. Try hard. It’s possible, so I hear.

10. A sense of humor. Don’t have one? GET ONE. NOW. The only way to make this drama into less of a horror flick and more of an action parody is to be able to laugh, often, at yourself and your situation.

So quit whining already. The credits will be rolling before you know it, take off those pouty pants, get yourself together and hit the road, running. You can do it.


Cap on benefits for single parents with toddlers ruled unlawful in landmark judgment, what benefits


Cap on benefits for single parents with toddlers ruled unlawful in landmark judgment

A central plank of the Government’s benefit reform programme has suffered a major setback after a High Court judge ruled it was unlawful and was causing “real misery” to single parents and their children.

Four single parents yesterday won their case against the use by Ministers of the controversial ‘benefit cap’ to limit the amount of benefit they receive.

Campaigners had argued that the cap forced single parents with children under two into poverty and homelessness, leaving them to rely on food banks and handouts.

The cap of £20,000, or £23,000 in London, is imposed on benefits received by those not working at least 16 hours a week.

But the single parents who took the Work and Pensions Secretary to court, on behalf of as many as 17,000 families, claimed it discriminates against the most vulnerable in society, who frequently struggle to pay for child care or are in zero-hours contracts.

Mr Justice Collins ruled in favour of their claim that they and their dependant babies and toddlers should have been exempted from the scheme.

He said: The evidence shows that the cap is capable of real damage to individuals such as the claimants. They are not workshy but find it, because of the care difficulties, impossible to comply with the work requirement.”

T he judge added: “Most lone parents with children under two are not the sort of households the cap was intended to cover and, since they will depend on DHP (Discretionary Housing Payments), they will remain benefit households. Real misery is being caused to no good purpose.

F ollowing the ruling the Government said it would await the outcome of an appeal to a higher court before deciding whether to grant an exemption to the cap for lone parents with children under two, allowing them to receive potentially hundreds more in annual benefits.

Mr Justice Collins’ ruling is being interpreted as a significant victory by the Government’s opponents, with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn saying the benefit cap represented another failing of the austerity programme.

He said: “It is failing in its own terms, it’s failing our communities, and it’s failing the most vulnerable in our country – including the victims of domestic violence and those facing homelessness.

The Prime Minister should accept the High Court’s judgment and end this discrimination against parents and children.

Lawyers for the four one parent families said the judge had ruled that the application of the cap was unlawful because of its discriminatory impact on lone parents with children under two.

R ebekah Carrier, of Hopkin Murray Beskine Solicitors, said: The benefit cap has had a catastrophic impact upon vulnerable lone parent families and children across the country.

Single mothers like my clients have been forced into homelessness and reliance on food banks as a result of the benefit cap.

Thousands of children have been forced into poverty, which has severe long-term effects on the health and well-being.

S he added: We are pleased that today’s decision will relieve my clients – and other lone parent families around the country – from the unfair impacts of austerity measures which have prevented them from being able to provide basic necessities for their children.

Charities have also welcomed the ruling against what they said was a “nasty policy”.

Alison Garnham, chief executive of the Child Poverty Action Group, said: In exposing the absurdity and cruelty of the benefit cap, we hope this case is the beginning of the end for this nasty policy. It is a policy that punishes the vulnerable for being vulnerable and even fails on its own terms.”

Anne Baxendale, director of communications, policy and campaigns at homelessness charity Shelter, which supported the challenge, said: Many of the families that come to Shelter for advice say the benefit cap is pushing them into homelessness.

Many desperately want to work but can’t make up the required hours of work a week due to childcare issues or insecure work like zero-hours contracts.”

B ut the Department for Work and Pensions immediately announced it intends to appeal against the ruling.

A spokesman for the department said: We are disappointed with the decision. Work is the best way to raise living standards, and many parents with young children are employed.

The benefit cap incentivises work, even if it’s part-time, as anyone eligible for working tax credits or the equivalent under Universal Credit, is exempt.

Even with the cap, lone parents can still receive benefits up to the equivalent salary of £25,000, or £29,000 in London [£20,000 and £23,000 after deductions], and we have made Discretionary Housing Payments available to people who need extra help.

The DWP added that since the introduction of the cap in April 2013, over 29,000 households who previously had their benefits capped have moved into work and are no longer capped.


Can I Claim Benefit, Can I Claim Benefit, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council, what benefits can i


Can I Claim Benefit?

You can make a claim for Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction if:

  • You pay rent to a private landlord, housing association, or a council property. But you cannot claim Housing Benefit if you rent from close relatives or the landlord also lives in the same property. A close relative is a parent/step parent or sibling/step sibling. However, if the relative has a commercial tenancy agreement (ie they are a landlord who has let properties previously) then you may be able to claim
  • You have to pay Council Tax on your home. But if you live in a property that is band E or higher you will only be paid up to the amount for a band D property
  • Your savings are less than 16,000 for Housing Benefit and 6000 for Council Tax Reduction applications
  • You work full time or part time (employed or self-employed) and get a low wage
  • You get Benefit or Tax Credit managed by the Department for Work and Pensions, the Inland Revenue or any other low income.

The rules on claiming Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction for self-employed people, students, people from abroad and people who have savings are different to those who get Benefit or Pensions.

There are also different rules for people who have adult children or adults who are not boarders/lodgers or joint tenants. You can find more information on all of the above situations in our related downloads.

How Much Benefit Could I Get?

This is based on the amount of income and savings you have. The more you have the less you get. When we work out your Benefit we take into account:

  • How much money you have coming in each week

Working age – there will be a cap on the amount of benefits that you can get. The Benefit Cap forms part of the Welfare Reform Changes that came into force from April 2013. There are a number of benefits that are included in the Benefit Cap as well as a number of benefits and circumstances that will exclude you from having the cap applied. The Benefit Cap factsheet in Related downloads can explain this further.

If you are not excluded from the benefit amount cap, it will be set at:

  • 500 per week for couples and lone parents; or
  • 350 per week for single adults.
  • How much you have in savings and investments
  • Who lives in your household and their circumstances
  • How much rent and Council Tax you have to pay
  • Whether you are of pension age or working age
  • How many rooms you need for your household (Housing Benefit only).

Renting from South Essex Homes or Housing Associations

Working age – the amount that you are awarded for Housing Benefit depends on the number of rooms you are allowed for your family circumstances, this is known as Size Criteria . Size Criteria forms part of the Welfare Reform Changes that came into force from April 2013. If you are considered to have:

  • 1 extra bedroom you will have a 14% reduction on your Housing Benefit
  • 2 or more extra bedrooms you will have a 25% reduction to your Housing Benefit

You will have to make up the difference yourself. There are some groups of people that are excluded from having the size criteria applied to their claim. For further information about these groups of people please see the Size Criteria Factsheet 2014 in Related Downloads.

Renting from a Private Landlord

If you are working age or pension age the amount you get depends on the Local Housing Allowance rate for the size property you are claiming for. The rates and are updated yearly and can be found in the LHA Rates 2017/2018 Poster in Related Downloads.

Payment on Two Homes

Housing Benefit is normally only paid for one home at a time. However, there are some exceptions where the council may consider paying benefit on two homes. These exceptions are:

  • You have moved into rented accommodation due to fear of violence
  • You are a student/trainee, one of a couple and have to live in separate rented accommodation
  • You have a large family and the council has housed you in two properties
  • You have moved to a new home which you have to pay rent for, but still have to pay rent for a period of time on the old property. This is known as unavoidable overlapping liability.

For further information on payment on two homes please read the Payment on Two Homes leaflet in Related Downloads.

Calculating your Entitlement

To find out an accurate assessment of what you could be entitled to please use the Entitled To Benefit Calculator. Not only will it calculate what you are currently entitled to based on your circumstances but it will also calculate whether you will be better off in work and how Universal Credit will affect you once active in the area.


Massachusetts Adoption Resource Exchange-MARE #adoptions, #adopciones, #adoption, #massachusetts, #state, #adopcion, #adoptions, #wednesday’s #child, #children #first,


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MARE finds “a permanent place to call home ” for children in foster care, including sibling groups and children who are traditionally harder to place. We do this by recruiting and supporting families throughout the adoption process, while targeting recruitment efforts to find families for specific children. So far, MARE has helped over 6,300 children join their forever families.

News Events

Thank you to our leading partners:

MARE Massachusetts Adoption Resource Exchange, Inc. 19 Needham Street, Suite 206, Newton, MA� 02461
617-964-MARE (6273) or 1-800-882-1176 617-542-1006

NON DISCRIMINATION POLICY

MARE welcomes and serves all constituents without regard to an individual’s actual or perceived race, creed, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, physical or mental ability, veteran status, domestic partnership or marital status. This policy also applies to employment practice, internal promotions, training, opportunities for advancement, terminations, outside vendors, service clients, use of contractors and consultants, and dealings with the general public.


Eating Disorders – Information and Support for Carers, Essex UK #eating #disorders #essex, #eating #disorders


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A parent-led initiative to share skills information provide mutual support for those caring for a loved one with an eating disorder.

We are based in Essex, UK and also support families in Suffolk.

parents Carers can do so much to help recovery.

We are a group of parents who met through NHS Eating Disorders service. We attended an 11 week Skills Based Course for Parents based on the New Maudsley Method which provided information, skills and confidence to support recovery. Through pooling our knowledge and experiences, and offering empathy and understanding, we hope to help other families support their loved one through recovery.

EAS-ED has two main aims:

1. To provide information that has been found to be helpful to those caring for someone with an eating disorder, covering a wide range of topics. Our website has sections on education, employment, accessing therapy, looking after yourself and much more.

2. To provide regular support meetings for carers where people can meet up and share experiences and provide mutual support.

Whether your loved one is a child, adolescent or adult, whether you are a parent, partner or carer, we welcome you. If you would like to connect with us and join our support group, please see the page for ‘EAS-ED Support Group ‘ for more information and use the ‘Contact Us ‘ page. If you include your contact details we will reply and can let you know about support group meetings and send you newsletters by email if you are interested. We will always respect your privacy and confidentiality.

EAS-ED is an un-funded organisation run entirely by parent volunteers

We are not trained professionals and do not offer medical advice, therapy or counselling

The information on this site is not a substitute for professional advice

WEBSITE CONTENTS:

(Click on item to go direct to the page)

We launched our website in September 2014, and we hope you will find it helpful. We welcome your feedback and contributions – Please help us to improve the site.

You can find out about our support group meeting dates and send brief messages using the ‘Contact Us ‘ page.

Please bookmark our site and revisit us often to see new material.

HAVE YOU SEEN.

Some of our activities, featured in our regular in newsletter, include:

  • Hosted evening event for carers – covered Skills Practice, The Mechanics of Stress, and Scrap-booking for Relaxation
  • Attended EDIC – 2016 Eating Disorders International Conference in London
  • We supported a Chat for Change carers event
  • In October, we were invited back to host a stand at the East Anglia Eating Disorders Network Conference .
  • Group representatives attended information events hosted by NELFT, which has won the contract to provide mental health services for children and young people across Essex, Southend Thurrock, outlining the launch of the new ‘Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health Service’.
  • We have updated the Accessing Therapy page to reflect the change in provision of NHS eating disorders services for young people in Essex with effect from November 1, 2015.
  • We attended a ‘Learn Share’ conference for voluntary organisations in the health sector.
  • In June/July we helped deliver a 5-week course for carers covering Holistic Resources for Managing Stress, with input from a range of professionals from health, education, and community / faith leaders.
  • Opportunities to ‘Walk Talk ‘ at various locations around Essex.
  • We added a page on Welfare Benefits – see tab For Carers.
  • Face Recovery Instagram – The inspirational recovered ‘Young Consultants’ from Maplehust ED Team have developed an Instagram site to promote recovery which sends out positive messages supporting recovery:- https://instagram.com/facerecovery/
  • For Eating Disorders Awareness Week in February, EAS-ED teamed up with the CAMHS Eating Disorder Team to run an open event to raise awareness of eating disorders and the therapy and support available in Essex. The evening was aimed at individuals, relatives and health education professionals. There were speakers from CAMHS Eating Disorders team, EAS-ED carers support group, and an inspirational Young Consultant, covering information about eating disorders, help and support for carers and stories of recovery and hope. The event was featured on BBC TV Look East News.
  • Three members of the EAS-ED team were interviewed on BBC Radio Essex for the Dave Monk show.
  • One of CAMHS ‘Young Consultants’ has kindly allowed us to publish her inspirational story of recovery from anorexia. This can be found under ‘Accessing Therapy’ – Recovery Story.
  • In October, we were invited to present ‘Parents Perspectives’ to 70+ Eating Disorders (E.D.) professionals at the East AngliaEating Disorders Network Conference .
  • We were finalists, jointly with Young Consultants, for NEP NHS Trust’s ‘Improving the Patient/Carer Experience’ Award in November.

Are you looking for information?

Let us know what you are looking for and we’ll aim to help!

You can use the ‘COntact Us’ page to reach us