Benefits that an eligible individual receives depend on their personal circumstances and are intended to help them manage living costs. Through this article, we aim to explore if it is possible for a benefits claimant to redirect their payments into someone else’s bank account. Additionally, we will also explore different situations under which individuals may be able to claim benefits and what are the circumstances that impact their benefits claim.

Can Benefits Be Paid Into Someone Else’s Bank Account?

Generally speaking, benefits payments are sent by the DWP directly into the claimant’s bank, credit union or building society account. However, if someone is unable to maange their finances they can assign a power of attorney to a close family member in whose bank account their benefits claim can be paid. When claimants are incapable of managing their bank account either due to old age or disability, there needs to be an tristed appointee (usually a close family member) who will have to share thteir bank account details anad manage the beenfits claim on behalf of the claimant.

In addition to another bank account, below are some options that can be availed by individuals wishing to redirect their benefits claim:

  • Joint Account: This is the simplest form of sharing finances which give access to a common bank account to both parties; the claimant and the appointee who manages their finances.
  • Standing Order: Through this facility, the claimant can instruct their bank to transfer a certain sum (the amount of their benefits claim) to another bank account periodically.
  • Third-Party Mandate: By assigning another person the authority to one’s bank account, the claimant can indirectly assign someone else to operate their bank account.
  • Permanent Agency: Benefits claimants using a Post Office card account can nominate a family member to gain access to their account if they are unable to do so on their own.

Can I Claim Benefits Working 16 Hours A Week?

If you claim any of the following benefits, your claim may be affected by working 16 hours a week:

  • Income Support
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Employment and Support Allowance

However, if you fall into any of the below categories, you can claim benefits and continue working for 16 hours or more:

  • Carers
  • Disabled people on a low income (due to disability)
  • Foster parents
  • Local Councillors 
  • People on certain training schemes
  • People living in residential care or a nursing home
  • Self-employed childminders
  • Share fishermen
  • Special occupations (such as. lifeboatmen, part-time firemen, Territorial Army, Volunteer Reserves and coastguards)
  • Volunteers

What Benefits Can I Claim If I Lose My Job?

If someone loses their job, they can claim the below-listed benefits if they fulfil the qualifying conditions for each:

  • Council Tax Reduction
  • Housing Benefit
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Tax Credits
  • Universal Credit

Claimants who have made the required number of contributions towards National Insurance for the past two tax years, prior to being sacked, will be able to claim New Style Job Seekers Allowance. They can claim this benefit for up to 6 months and it will be paid directly into their bank or credit union account on fortnightly basis. If you have a partner who has a separate income, their income will not count towards your JSA claim. 

Depending on your circumstances, you will be able to claim as per the following classification:

  • if you are between 18-24 years of age, you will receive £57.90 
  • if you are older than 25 years of age, you will receive £73.10
  • if you are a couple and both of you are older than 18 years of age, you can claim £114.85

What Are The Benefits For 17-Year-Olds Living At Home?

You may be able to claim Universal Credit if you are a 17-year-old living at home, with your parents. However, the fact that you live with your parents may reduce the monetary amount of your benefits claim. Additionally, if you are in full-time education, apprenticeship or training, you may not qualify for Universal Credit.

In certain cases, once individuals are over 16 years old, they can start claiming their Universal Credit and Personal Independence Payments directly; while other benefits will still be claimed by their parents.

17-year-olds who do not live at home with their parents may be entitled to Universal Credit as well as Jobseekers Allowance. If someone is 16 or 17 years of age, expecting a child or already has one (or more), they may additionally be able to claim Income Support.

To be able to claim Universal credit as a 17-year-old you must fulfil the following conditions:

The claimant does not have any have parental support and:

  • have limited capability for work
  • has a health condition or disability and they can provide medical evidence 
  • is responsible for a severely disabled person or child
  • lives with a partner who is eligible for Universal Credit
  • is expecting a baby in the next 11 weeks
  • has had a baby in the last 15 weeks

Can I Claim Benefits If I Own A House?

Yes, you can claim benefits such as Income Support and Job Seekers Allowance if you own a house; however, you will no longer be eligible for Housing Benefit. The reason for this lies in the fact that to qualify for Housing Benefit, claimants need to be able to fulfil the following criteria:

  • be at least 16 years old
  • have a low income or be claiming other benefits
  • have less than £16,000 in savings

If your house is mortgaged, you can still claim benefits and use the sum of payments received to pay your mortgage interest.

You can also continue claiming benefits if you own a home through the joint ownership scheme. In this case, you will also be able to claim Housing Benefit or Universal Credit Housing Cost element for your monthly rental or mortgage payments. 

If you own a house or you live with a partner who owns their house, you can claim support to help you pay your mortgage interest. This is a repayable interest accrued loan.

Can I Claim Benefits If Someone Lives With Me?

Yes, you can claim benefits if someone lives with you as long as your place of residence is not their main residence. This means that they may choose to stay with you for a few days or sleepover in the night or stay over if they are taking care of you for any reason; however, they must have evidence to prove that they have a permanent residence of their own where they are responsible for paying rent, council tax and monthly utility bills.

There has been a general assumption that someone staying over at your place for two to three nights per week will not affect your benefits or in the case of a relationship, you will not be considered as a partner. The error with this assumption is that it is not the number of days (or nights) that count towards classifying two people as living together and consequently affecting their benefits, it is the evidential proof of whether someone is considering your home as their own when they stay in your house. 

If someone regularly stays at your place for a few nights each week, doesn’t have a permanent residence of their own or their bills are addressed to your home, they will be considered as living with you and due to this change in your circumstances, your benefits will be affected.

Does A Gift Of Money Affect Your Benefits?

No, a one time gift of money or small amounts of it at varying intervals will not affect your benefits. Additionally, the amount of money that you may receive from friends, family or charitable sources is not included in the means test for benefits.

However, should you incur regular/periodic payments from friends, family or charity, these will be added under the “savings” section for your benefit claim. This is applicable if you receive large amounts of gift money and your total savings exceed £6,000.

Monetary gifts in the form of an annuity are considered as an income and will bear an impact on your benefits claim. However, voluntary payments from a former partner or parent of a child are not considered a gift of money.

When a means test is carried out for benefits claim, the following types of income are taken into account for benefits claim and that too for income-based benefits:

  • Cash
  • Stocks and shares
  • Savings
  • Assets
  • Investments (rent, dividend, interest)
  • Unearned income (pension payments, student income)

What Are Means-Tested Benefits?

Means-tested benefits are those state benefits that are calculated on the basis of someone’s income, savings and capital. This is the reason why when someone is considered to be sharing your house or you and a partner appear to live together, their income and savings are also taken into account for your benefits claim and reduce the amount that you were receiving earlier.

Means-tested benefits include the following:

  • Income Support
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance 
  • Income-based Jobseekers Allowance 
  • Housing Benefit 
  • Council Tax Reduction 
  • Pension Credit 
  • Child Tax Credit 
  • Working Tax Credit 
  • Universal Credit

Conclusion:

The detailed discussion above makes it clear that although benefits payments are made directly into the bank account of the claimant, these payments can be redirected to someone else’s bank account under special circumstances and with the permission of the DWP. While it may be clear why this is being done in the case of elderly or disabled claimants, if there is another reason to do so, the claimant will have to state the same in a formal application to the DWP.

FAQs: Can Benefits Be Paid Into Someone Else’s Bank Account?

How much money can you have in the bank and still claim benefits in the UK?

There are certain benefits that are affected by the amount in your bank account while others may not be so. In the case of means-tested benefits, your bank account should not hold more than £10,000 for you to remain eligible to claim benefits.

Can you have a mortgage and claim benefits?

Yes, you can have a mortgage and still claim benefits. You can also continue claiming benefits if you own a home through the joint ownership scheme. In this case, you will also be able to claim Housing Benefit or Universal Credit Housing Cost element for your monthly rental or mortgage payments. 

Can I Still Claim Benefits If I Sell My House?

You may be able to continue claiming benefits if you sell your house; however, there may be a reduction in your payments due to an increase in your savings from the sale of your house.

Does a gift of money affect your benefits?

While a one-time gift of money may not affect your benefits claim. If you receive a gift of oney over a period of time through instalments, it will be considered as an income and reduce your benefits claim.

How Long Can Someone Stay Without Affecting Benefits?

Whether it is a partner, friend or family member; anyone can stay at your house without affecting benefits as long as your place of residence is not their main residence. 

References:

After you’ve been dismissed – Citizens Advice

Benefits and tax credits when you’ve lost your job | MoneyHelper

Money-borrowing/dismissal-benefits

Out of work benefits – what are you entitled to after a job loss? | CashLady

Universal Credit and you – GOV.UK

Claims by 16 and 17-year-olds

Income from voluntary or charity sources.

How-your-benefits-are-means-tested/

Can You Claim Benefits If You Own A House?.

Health-costs-care-costs-and-money-issues/collecting-benefits-disabled-people-dwp/

Payment of benefits and tax credits – Citizens Advice

How and when your benefits are paid – GOV.UK

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