What is the Benefit Cap?

The Benefit Cap is a Central Government change which limits the total amount of certain benefits working age households can receive before any deductions are taken. Pensioners will not be affected by the Benefit Cap.

Since November 2016 the Benefit Cap has been:

  • £384.62 a week if you're a couple - with or without dependent children
  • £384.62 a week if you're a lone parent with dependent children
  • £257.69 a week if you're a single person without children

 Your household includes you, your partner and any dependent children you are responsible for and who live with you. The income of any non-dependents living with you, such as adult children, won't count.

There are four main ways to manage the effect of the Cap;

1.Find paid work that gives you an entitlement to Working Tax Credits

2.Claim an exempting benefit

3.Find cheaper accommodation

4.Budget to pay the shortfall on your rent

The council’s Welfare Reform Team is here to support you if you are affected by the Cap, if you would like to speak to a Benefit Cap Coordinator please call them on 01189372410 or email them on welfare.reform@reading.gov.uk

For more information about the Benefit Cap please have a look at our web page including our Factsheet by clicking here and following the link or visit the government website by clicking here.