What is New Style Job Seekers Allowance?
There are 2 types of Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) – Contributory Job Seekers Allowance and Income based Job Seekers Allowance which is means tested. Contributory JSA is renamed New Style JSA when new claims are made after the full roll out stage of Universal Credit (UC) is reached. The rules for New Style JSA are almost the same as for Contributory JSA. It depends on having paid enough Class 1 National Insurance Contributions (paid by employed people). The main rule difference is that New Style JSA is subject to the same rules as a UC claim meaning that there are tougher rule son sanctions, claimant responsibilities and commitments and different rules regarding overpayments.
New Style JSA
New Style JSA is paid if you have enough national insurance contributions and can either be claimed on its own or with a top up of Universal Credit (UC) if you live in a full service UC area and need to claim for other family members or housing costs, for example. In the latter case any New Style JSA received would be treated as income for the UC claim and deducted.
In practise it can be difficult to claim practically as the UC form does not specifically mention New Style JSA and DWP staff and work coaches have at times been wrongly advising claimants that they are now in a full service UC area and can no longer claim JSA – this is, of course, correct if the claimant wishes to claim income based JSA but not if they are eligible to claim New Style JSA.
This is a very serious problem as it may mean that some claimants fail to get any benefit at all eg if they have too much savings or a partner in full time employment. Those who are wrongly refused will miss out on either £57.90 or £73.10 (depending on age) for 6 months.
So how would a New Style JSA claim be made?
If you live in a full service UC area then you should either claim online at:
or by phone on:
0800 055 6688 Monday to Friday 8 am to 6 pm
Tel the DWP you want to claim New Style JSA.
If you are prevented from claiming in this way you should tell the Job centre you need Form UCJSA1.
If you think you have been wrongly refused New Style JSA you should seek advice as soon as possible.