Benefits are set to rise next month, with some kicking in as early as this weekend.
The Chancellor’s Spring Budget – amounting to what Jeremy Hunt called the “biggest change to our welfare system in a decade”- sees the National Living Wage, housing benefits and parental pay rise in April. There will be additional cost of living payments for those on certain benefits.
The reforms included the scrapping of the work capability assessment to determine eligibility for sickness benefits, and tougher sanctions on claimants who don’t meet job seeking requirements.
The move will cost the Exchequer £11b with around 10 million households set to benefit from increase in financial support.
Here’s everything you need to know about benefits going up.
When will my benefits rise?
Those who are on universal credit and other state benefits will see their payments increase from April, rising in line with September 2022’s level of inflation. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation for September 2022 was 10.1 per cent – so benefits will rise by this amount from April 2023.
The new rates will kick in from 10 April, but when you start to receive the increase will depend on when your benefit payment normally occurs.
Benefits, payments and the state pension will go up on the first Monday after the new tax year, which starts on 10 April. Maternity, paternity, and statutory sick pay will also be upped by 10.1 per cent and kick in after 10 April.
National Living Wage
The National Living Wage for those aged 23 and over will increase from £9.50 to £10.42 an hour, effective from 1 April.
The minimum wage is what an employer has to pay a worker by law, depending on age, and roughly two million workers are set to benefit from the increase. In addition, accommodation offset – a fee charged to employees who stay in housing provided by their employer – will be increasing from Saturday.
The offset caps what an employer can charge, and daily rate will be going to £9.10 from £8.70, with the weekly offset going up from £60.90 to £63.70.
Statutory sick pay
Statutory sick pay is the minimum an employee must be paid if they’re too unwell to work.
Sick pay is given to employees of companies who are off sick for at least four days in a row. The standard weekly rate is £96.35 a week, but this will be rising from 10 April to £109.40.
Maternity, paternity, adoption, and bereavement benefits
Parental and bereavement pay will increase from the current rate of £156.66 per week to £172.48 per week, but the weekly earnings threshold to be eligible for both statutory pays will remain the same, at £123 per week.
Housing benefit support
Extra financial help with housing costs will increase to assist those higher rents and mortgage payments. The traditional housing benefit has been replaced by universal credit for new claimants, but the amount you receive is dependent on age and circumstance.
A full list of exact rises for individual demographics can be found here.