Last updated: 30/06/2020
If you are getting income support at the moment you will continue to do so until your circumstances change or you are invited to claim universal credit instead.
Income support is a means-tested benefit given for day-to-day living expenses. So It may be affected by other income or savings that you have.
You receive income support as a single parent if:
- You are 16 years of age or over and
- you are not working or working less than 16 hours per week and
- you have less than £16,000 in savings and
- you have a dependent child living with you who is under the age of five years.
If you have a child who receives disability living allowance at the middle rate or higher rate care component, you receive carer’s allowance, or you foster children you can continue to get income support when you do not have a child under 5 years old.
If you work under 16 hours per week the first £20 you earn is ignored. Anything after that reduces your income support pound for pound.
When your youngest child is aged two to four you will be required to undertake work related activities. Failure to attend the interview or undertake the work-related activity without ‘good cause’ may result in your income support paid at a reduced rate.
When your youngest child turns 5 your income support will stop, and you can make a claim for universal credit.
Single mothers aged 16 and over can claim income support while still in full-time non-advanced education at school or college. They can also claim the educational maintenance allowance of £30 per week if they meet the criteria. The educational maintenance allowance does not affect income support or housing benefit.
Income support personal allowance rates:
Single parent under 18 years: £58.90
Single parent aged 18 and over: £74.35
You may also be entitled to an additional premium of £37.50 if you are a carer.