The benefit cap

If you are under the age for pension credit, then in some circumstances your HB may be reduced under the benefit cap rules. This can only happen if your total income from certain specified benefits would be more than a specified amount, which is £500 a week for couples or lone parents, and £350 a week otherwise. The cap is applied by reducing your housing benefit so that the total weekly income from benefits is no more than the cap.

You are exempt from the benefit cap if you, your partner, or a child in your family is entitled to working tax credit.

Many disabled people will be exempt from the benefit cap, as certain disability related benefits provide exemption. You are exempt from the cap if you or your partner is receiving any one of the following benefits:

• Disability Living Allowance (or Personal Independence Payment)

• Attendance Allowance

• Employment and Support Allowance with the support component

• Industrial Injuries Benefits or equivalent payments as part of a war disablement pension or the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme

• War Widow's or War Widower's Pension

If you are affected by the benefit cap, seek advice as soon as possible. You may also be able to get help from the local authority's Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP) scheme.

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