January can be a really tight month for us all – as well as recovering from the huge expenditure of Christmas, it’s a long month with five weeks until payday and also usually happens to be the month that quarterly bills get taken, so by the middle of the month we’re all feeling a bit stretched. As much as many people feel that claiming benefits carries a huge stigma, if you’re a British citizen, there may be things to which you’re entitled but aren’t yet receiving. Take a look below to see if there’s support you might be able to claim:
Employment Support Allowance
ESA is the replacement for the now defunct Incapacity Benefit. It is used by millions of people throughout the country, which is perhaps why you find it so hard to get through when you contact ESA. If you need to speak to someone regarding ESA, use the number provided by ContactNumber.net which can be found here: https://contactnumberuk.net/esa/
If you’re renting, you may be entitled to some housing benefit even if you work full time. They are also able to support homeowners on some occasions by helping with interest payments on your mortgage. Either way, if you’re struggling then it’s definitely worth applying to see if you’re entitled to anything towards your housing costs.
Are you a main carer for a family member, and if so does this affect your ability to have a job? If so then you may be entitled to an amount of carers allowance. The rules on what you can claim have recently changed, but speaking to someone to see if you’re eligible could really help if you’re in a sticky situation with no other help.
Council Tax Reduction
It was ruled a couple of years ago that Council Tax would no longer be fully discounted, so even the poorest families in the UK are expected to pay some towards their council tax. However, there are some exceptions in terms of reductions that you may be entitled to, for instance if you’re a student or the only adult in a household, Speaking to your local council may help you to work out if there are any discounts which which you may be entitled.
If you’re hoping to retrain or get back into education, there are lots of grants and bursaries available for student learners, especially within certain fields such as teaching. Speaking to the university or college you’d like to study at is probably a good place to start if you want to work out how much help you’d get towards study fees.