I appreciate that many constituents have concerns about the Cost of Living at the moment so I hope that the guide below will be helpful in understanding different support packages that may be available to you.
If you have any specific questions or need support in accessing any of these do email me on firstname.lastname@example.org
Government Support Schemes
There are a number of government support schemes to help the Cost of Living some new and some existing that you may not be aware of.
The government has increased the threshold at which you start paying NI. This means that you can now earn £12,570 a year completely tax-free.
That means that from July anyone earning £36,600 or less (around 70% of UK workers) will pay less NI with a typical saving of £330 a year.
National Minimum and National Living Wages
In April both the National Living and National Minimum Wage rates increased. If you are on either of these pay methods do check your pay slip to make sure you've received the uplift. If you don't think you are do speak with your employer.
Claim Universal Credit
If you’re on low income, out of work or cannot work you may be eligible for Universal Credit. You can check if you’re eligible for Universal Credit here.
Earlier this year the government also increased the UC taper meaning claimants keep more of the money they earn. Do check you are receiving this uplift and if you don't think you are you should contact the DWP.
Claim Marriage Allowance
Marriage Allowance allows you to transfer 10% (up to £1,260) of your personal tax allowance to your husband, wife or civil partner if you earn less than the personal tax allowance.
Support for Carers
If you care for somebody at least 35 hours a week and they get certain benefits (eg PIP, Disability Living Allowance, etc) you could get up to £69.70 a week.
You don't have to be related to, or live with, the person you care for.
You could get extra money to help with your living costs if you’re over State Pension age and on a low income: even if you have savings or own your own home.
Get help with savings if you’re on a low income (Help to Save)
Help to Save is a savings account. If you’re entitled to Working Tax Credit or you’re receiving Universal Credit, you can get a bonus of 50p for every £1 you save over 4 years.
Child Trust Funds
A Child Trust Fund is a long-term tax-free savings account for children born between 1 September 2002 and 2 January 2011.
For those who hold an account but do not know the Child Trust Fund provider, or if you’re unsure whether you have one or not, we can help you find out.
Get help if you cannot pay your tax bill
Contact HMRC as soon as possible if you cannot pay your tax bill. We’re here to help, and you may be able to pay what you owe in instalments, depending on your circumstances and what you can afford.
Find out what to do if you cannot pay your tax bill on time