This blog post will help its readers in answering the question of whether or not Supply Teachers can claim benefits. For this purpose, we will explore the potential welfare benefits that Supply Teachers can claim, assess their eligibility criteria as well as get an estimate of the expected amount one may receive. Additionally, we will also look at other forms of possible financial support that Supply Teachers can claim in the UK.

Can Supply Teachers Claim Benefits?

Yes, Supply Teachers can claim benefits. Depending on their circumstances and ability to meet the eligibility criteria, Supply Teachers can claim the following welfare benefits across the UK:

  • Universal Credit
  • New Style Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • New Style Employment and Support Allowance

Supply Teachers can claim Universal Credit if they are on a low income and need help with living costs. They can be working full-time, part-time or unemployed to claim the benefit. To be eligible for Universal Credit, they should:

  • be living in the UK
  • be aged 18 years or above and below the State Pension age
  • have savings and investments equal to or less than £16,000

If you are a Supply Teacher who intends to file a claim for New Style Jobseeker’s Allowance, you should have worked (or are working) as an employee and paid Class 1 National Insurance contributions for the previous 2 to 3 years.

They should also be able to meet the below eligibility criteria for New Style JSA:

  • live in England, Scotland or Wales
  • aged 18 years or above and under the State Pension age
  • not enrolled in full-time education
  • be currently available for work or working (whether part-time or full time)
  • be working for less than 16 hours a week or not working at all
  • not have a health condition or disability which restricts them from working

Supply Teachers can claim New Style Employment and Support Allowance if they have a health condition or disability that restricts the number of hours that they can work. In addition to this, they should also be able to meet the following criteria:

  • be under the State Pension age
  • have either worked as an employee or self employed
  • paid the required amount of National Insurance contributions in the past 2 to 3 years

However, if you claim Jobseeker’s Allowance or Statutory Sick Pay, you will not be able to claim Employment and Support Allowance.

Statutory Sick Pay is paid by your employer when you need to take extended time off due to sickness. If Supply Teachers meet the eligibility criteria, they can also claim Statutory Sick Pay through an umbrella company or supply agency. This means that they should have:

  • worked for a minimum of three continuous months 
  • earned at least £118 each week

In case the pay level increases, the average pay over the previous eight weeks will be taken into consideration.

How Much Can Supply Teachers Claim With Benefits?

In the case of Universal Credit, Supply Teachers can claim according to the following classification:

CircumstancesStandard Monthly Allowance
Single and under 25£265.31
Single and 25 or older£334.91
Living with a partner; both partners are under 25£416.45 (for both partners)
Living with a partner; one or both partners are 25 or older£525.72 (for both partners)

This is just the standard allowance; which can be topped up with additional elements for claimants who need help with housing costs, have children, need help with childcare costs, and have a health condition or disability.

You can claim Universal Credit online or by calling the Universal Credit helpline at 0800 328 5644.

If you are a Supply Teacher who qualifies for New Style Jobseeker’s Allowance, the payments you can receive are classified as follows:

  • You can get up to £61.05 if you are up to 24 years of age
  • You can get up to £77.00 if you are 25 years of age or older

You can either apply online or call the New Style Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) helpline at 0800 169 0310 for alternative application formats.

The amount you can claim with Employment And Support Allowance depends on the stage of your application as well as your age.

For instance, claimants can get either of the following amounts during the initial 13 weeks while their ESA claim is being assessed:

  • claimants aged under 25 years can get up to £61.05 a week
  • claimants aged 25 years or above can get up to £77.00 a week

After this initial period is over, claimants can get either of the following payments:

  • claimants who are assigned the work-related activity group can get up to £77.00 a week
  • claimants who are assigned the support group can get up to £117.60 a week 

You can either apply for an ESA claim online or call the Jobcentre Plus new claims helpline

at 0800 055 6688.

Can Supply Teachers Get Any Other Financial Support?

Yes, there are other forms of financial support that Supply Teachers can claim. These include the following:

  • Education Support is a UK-based charity that offers financial grants to lecturers, teachers, teaching assistants, supply teachers, support staff and even retired staff.
  • UNISON supports its members and their families every year with general living costs including household appliances. urgent repairs, disability equipment and utility bills.
  • The NASUWT | Benevolent Fund provides support to members, former members, the dependants of members and former members, as well as dependants of deceased members, against a subscription paid to the Union.
  • Teaching Staff Trust offers financial help to individuals from the educational field. They provide support to those who have been affected by bereavement, serious ill health or injury, loss of home or loss of income.”
  • NEU Trust Fund helps current and former members of the NEU; as well as its legacy organisations and their dependents.

Conclusion:

We can fairly conclude from the above discussion that Supply Teachers can claim certain benefits. These include Universal Credit, New Style Jobseeker’s Allowance and New Style Employment and Support Allowance. However, they will have to qualify for the eligibility criteria for each benefit individually and file separate claims for each one. Their circumstances and income level will determine the payment that they can expect to receive through their benefit claim.

References:

Social Security Benefits During the Coronavirus Pandemic

What financial support and help is there for Supply Teachers?

Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA): How it works – GOV.UK

What Universal Credit is – GOV.UK

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA): Overview – GOV.UK