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To take it easy and claim benefits?

(35 Posts)
santascupcakes Fri 17-Dec-10 10:10:00

I work part time on a shift rota. This worked around DH's full time job which he has just lost. (He was a manager for 15 years and set his own rota around mine).

We have 4dc's under 7yrs. 2 in school and 2 babies.

His old job was quite unique and competetive and we are not going to find another in the same position where he could set his own hours.

We could both change jobs but childcare costs could be a huge issue.

Advice from CAB says that if I continue to do my job which is currently 20hrs per week, (could be increased in future if someone leaves) then DH could be SAHD and we would get our housing and council tax paid.

This does seem like a good idea especially when we consider how much money that adds up to.

DooinMeCleanin Fri 17-Dec-10 10:12:30

It's not the best idea, given how things are so uncertain atm wrt benefits and iirc they are changing the WTC threshold to 24 hours soon, so it wouldn't work.

mrsruffallo Fri 17-Dec-10 10:14:20

That sounds good for a temporary measure. The main thing is whatever works for your family

AuntiePickleBottom Fri 17-Dec-10 10:15:03

i would for the short term

classydiva Fri 17-Dec-10 10:15:04

If that is the only course of action open to you at the moment then you should do it, how else will you survive whilst he is out of work?

He can always look for work until he finds the right job, maybe you can both look for alternative employment that suits you both.

nottirednow Fri 17-Dec-10 10:20:03

Message withdrawn

redskyatnight Fri 17-Dec-10 10:22:04

Regardless of the ethics or otherwise (and I agree with PPs that short term using benefits if a reasonable option), does your DH actually want to be a SAHD? If he's used to being a fairly "high up" manager he might find it incredibly difficult to adjust/feel undervalued being a SAHD etc.

EricNorthpolesChristmas Fri 17-Dec-10 10:23:25

For now that's fine - it's what benefits are for. But one parent working part time isn't really supporting the family properly, so you should be looking to either go full time or for your DH to work part time as well, IMO. Best of luck!

booyhohoho Fri 17-Dec-10 10:26:11

can you increase your hours OP? if he is there full time then i assume childcare costs wont be a factor in what hours you do?

MorticiaAddams Fri 17-Dec-10 10:28:59

Going against the grain, it would depend on whether this is a temporary option whilst you and/or your dh are looking for full time work or whether you are seeing benefits as a career option.

For me the situation you have outlined could only be used a stopgap used in desperation until we found more work and I know that dh would struggle to claim benefits at all.

I couldn't respect myself or my husband if we were both healthy and chose to live on benefits for an easy life. You have been very lucky that your dh has had such a flexible job but you both know that it's the exception rather than the rule and it seems rather pathetic and a bad example to your children to live the easy life rather than face the childcare difficulties that most other working parents face.

mssoul Fri 17-Dec-10 10:29:26

My DP lost his job last month. You poor thing, how worrying for you. So sorry this has happened at Christmas.

santascupcakes Fri 17-Dec-10 10:30:11

I think he would like the break. The situation over his job has been going on for the last year and has left him physically and mentally exhausted.

I can't go full time in current job until someone leaves. I am also a university student and finish late next year at which time I hope to do a PGCE. Hopefully I can get a job in a school but have been sending off applications for the last 6 months and just do not get a reply.

ccpccp Fri 17-Dec-10 10:31:59

Are CAB really giving advice like that? Arrange your affairs so that you rely on the taxpayer to house and feed you?

Your DH is a skilled worker and should be looking for another job, relying on benefits only until he finds one.

Its true though that few jobs will give him the flexibility he had before. Public sector?

frgr Fri 17-Dec-10 10:32:36

If he wouldn't resent it (certainly, my DH enjoyed his year of being a SAHP ten times more than I did!) then I really think you should go for it in the short term. It doesn't seem like you're taking the piss.

santascupcakes Fri 17-Dec-10 10:33:21

Yes very worrying mssoul. We sort of knew it was coming and were organised for xmas thankfully.

He is thinking about self employment also in the new year. He just needs to make his ideas workable.

GetOrfMoiLand Fri 17-Dec-10 10:35:17

Firstly I am sorry your DH lost his job - that must be so awful for the pair of you.

I am certainly not going to flame you and I hope that nobody else does.

BUT I can't say that I think your idea is a good one. If your DH wants to still have a career at some point, a couple of years or whatever may make it extremely hard to get a job, especially if his job was rather niche in the first place. Plus does he want to be a SAHD - he may well be very down at losing his job, and staying at home and not having the validation of a career may make him unhappier still.

Secondly, I think that if you have one stay at home parent, the other should work full time. I don't think it is a credible argument that you will be better off on PT hours and benefits. Pklus if you go FT that may well increase your career options and you could potentially get more money going into the future. If you stay on benefits there are no options for a pay rise blah de blah. And you have no idea if the particular benefits you are on will be cut by the clowns in governement at present.

booyhohoho Fri 17-Dec-10 10:36:24

tbh if both of your are able to work then i would arrange things so that you were working enough that you didn't need to depend on benefits to pay bills. temporarily yes, but IMO, temporarily would mean you were actively looking to change the situation (i.e; you looking for more hours/new job or him looking for part-time/full time work that fits in round school/your work.) could either of you get a job doing nightshifts somewher so that it wouldn't affect childcare?

GetOrfMoiLand Fri 17-Dec-10 10:36:35

x posts with you saying that you can't go FT until someone leaves.

GetOrfMoiLand Fri 17-Dec-10 10:37:35

That's a good idea boohyhoo. I know plenty of people who worked opposite shifts (8-4, 4-12) so they didn't have to worry about childcare, other than for half an hour at shift change.

hairyfairylights Fri 17-Dec-10 10:39:30

You should each look for full time work, whichever of you gets the better paid work, should take the job, the other should stay at home or do part time.

Or, if you both want time with the children you should each find part time work.

But if to survive you need 1.5 jobs between you, then you must make every effort to do that.

Benefits are there to support in times of need, not times you want to kick back and take it easy.

There is (or should be ) no such thing as 'choosing to live off benefits' if you are able to work.

santascupcakes Fri 17-Dec-10 10:40:09

Hi, my job already does some nights depending on rota. I get paid just under £10 and hour for 20 hours.
He could go to an agency in the short term, immediate work seems to be at minimum wage and so would work out the same as mine plus I would need to leave my job so that he could do full time hours.

Arrrggghhh do not know what to do!!

booyhohoho Fri 17-Dec-10 10:41:33

yes my mum worked nights while we were small and then when we started school so they didn't have the childcare expense to worry about. often her nightshifts fell around weekends so dad was there during the days so she could sleep. nightshifts aren't easy, I'm not saying they are but no-one promised me life would be easy. i think if you can work, you should.

frgr Fri 17-Dec-10 10:42:43

"There is no such thing as 'choosing to live off benefits' if you are able to work."

Disagree in the strongest of terms with this. Don't confuse idealism with reality. I know people for whom this has been a very concious choice. that's not to say that they're not worried about recent announcements, but there's still no truly pressing incentive for them to seek work. Yet.

"There should be no such thing as 'choosing to live off benefits' if you are able to work."

100% Agreed.

booyhohoho Fri 17-Dec-10 10:42:52

why would you need to leave your job if he worked full time? surely you were working before he lost his job?

countless Fri 17-Dec-10 10:44:56

it's not wrong to claim anything you're entitled to but to become workless in order to claim benefits is ridiculous

i almost don't believe the op

doesn't your dh have concerns for future of his career if he drops out now? how does he know he'll enjoy being SAHD? does the vision of this new lifestyle of living on breadline fill you with joy???

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