FAQs: Jobseekers


Are jobseekers entitled to benefits?

Jobseekers may be eligible to receive benefits to help them financially through their period of unemployment. The benefits jobseekers may be entitled to vary depending on their individual circumstances and their reasons for ceasing employment. The main benefit that most jobseekers receive is Jobseeker’s Allowance.

What is Jobseeker’s Allowance?

Jobseeker’s Allowance is income support available to people who are ‘actively looking for work’. It is a weekly benefit paid directly into eligible people’s bank accounts. The current rate in February 2012 is £53.45 for under 25s, £67.50 for over 25s and £105.95 for married couples and civil partners.

What are the types of Jobseeker’s Allowance?

There are two types of Jobseeker’s Allowance; ‘contribution-based Jobseeker’s Allowance’, and ‘income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance’. Contribution-based Jobseeker’s Allowance is available to people who have paid enough National Insurance contributions in the last two complete tax years. It is usually paid for up to 182 days. Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance is based on a person’s income and savings.

Who is eligible for Jobseeker’s Allowance?

To be eligible to receive Jobseeker’s Allowance you must live in the UK, and be able to work for at least 40 hours a week and be looking for work. You must be aged 18 or over and be under the State Pension age and you must not be in education. You must also have paid enough National Insurance on your income. You cannot have savings over a certain amount as you will have to use these funds first. You will have to enter into a ‘jobseeker’s agreement’, which sets out the actions you will take to get a job.

How do you claim Jobseeker’s Allowance?

You can claim Jobseeker’s Allowance online or by telephone. You will then need to attend for an interview where your eligibility will be further assessed.

If you would like expert legal advice on jobseekers’ rights then we can help to put you in touch with local specialist solicitors free of charge. Call us on 08001 221 2299 or complete the web-from and let our dedicated case handlers find the right solicitor for you.

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