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To think the Job Centre are ruining my life?

(46 Posts)
MrsSquishy Wed 17-Aug-16 18:02:05

Perhaps melodramatic (please no poor bashing or asking why we don't have savings as we are a student/ recent graduate, also just moved house) but...
Long story short- I'm a student though I pay half of rent, things for DC etc, DH works full time but has recently lost his job. He has since found another better paid job but isn't starting for a month.
Anyway, the night he lost his job we filled in the forms for Job Seekers, Housing Benefit etc realising that we would very quickly run out of money. Needs must, it's a safety net and all that.
DHdoes everything they ask, brings in all the evidence and attends all the meetings and workshops. Anyway, we wait and wait and eventually receive a letter asking for all the evidence that he brought in because the Job Centre didn't send it. DH schleps to the post box to post it. We wait again...they don't receive it. This time DH brings it into the Job Centre so they can send it again.
Later that day, a letter arrives from Housing Benefit- they don't have the evidence from the Job Centre. DH heads over to drop it to the council. They tell us it could be days (rent due tomorrow).
Today the Jobseekers claim finally went live and thus should be backdated. We finally relax, thinking we can do some food shopping and even pay our late council tax. No- it's hugely reduced because they've classed all of my student finance as income, though the vast majority goes straight to nursery for DC, though I did keep specifying that only £4000 pa could be classed as income.
Not only that but we weren't due anything for the first week of DH being unemployed ('waiting period') and now we won't receive anything from the time DH signs off until when he gets his wages after working a month because they 'don't do that anymore'. Four weeks with no money coming in and I have no idea how we will buy food or live. Even if Housing Benefit pull through, we will be well over £1000 overdrawn/ in debt.
That's it really. I just need to rant and vent angry

isthistoonosy Wed 17-Aug-16 18:07:58

Could he explain to.his new hob when he starts and ask if they can advance him My first grad job did that for me all be it that was 12 yrs ago.

MrsSquishy Wed 17-Aug-16 18:17:35

I think that he is very hesitant to because this job seems a bit 'too good to be true' and he doesn't want to risk anything. Ultimately we will probably take out a loan but we've never been in debt before and in theory we shouldn't need to as we are entitled to support for the 5 weeks he is unemployed sad

Patapouf Wed 17-Aug-16 18:36:58

I'm not sure why you thought he could will receive jobseekers after starting a new job? Of course it doesn't work like that.

Re: student loan, what do you mean only £4K can be counted? You cannot dictate to them which parts are to be counted because they have strict guidance for this.

It's a shitty situation, but there are worse things than having to live in your overdraft after a period of not being at work.
Sympathies for having to deal with the application process, it's a pain in the arse!

MrsSquishy Wed 17-Aug-16 18:39:22

The guidance is that grants are not counted as income, unless I have been hugely misled. It seems silly to class a childcare grant as income as I see none of it and actually pay more on top of it.
Yes, there are worse things than going overdrawn and probably most student are at some point. It's the constant sending evidence and phoning that's getting us down

isthistoonosy Wed 17-Aug-16 18:40:47

As your a student it could be worth opening a few student accounts and taking out low rate overdrafts rather then a loan. Of course only provided you strictly budget and get it all paid back as quick as you can when his job starts.

isthistoonosy Wed 17-Aug-16 18:41:58

I mean student bank accounts btw

FrameyMcFrame Wed 17-Aug-16 18:44:47

Get a credit card? It's annoying but at least he's got this good job and you'll be sorted soon.

SwishySplash Wed 17-Aug-16 18:48:39

I think it's illegal to open more than one student account.

unlimiteddilutingjuice Wed 17-Aug-16 18:55:28

YANBU: The benefits system is very stingy and the application process is stressful and drawn out.
If its any consolation- any amount of Income Based JSA will passport you to "full" Housing Benefit so you should end up with some help with your rent (although depending on the amount of your rent, this still may not cover all of it).
If you rent from the council or a Housing Association they will normally be prepared to wait if you explain what is going on.
Congratulations on your DP's new job. Hopefully this skint period will soon be an unhappy memory flowers

Ninasimoneinthemorning Wed 17-Aug-16 18:58:55

That's absolutly shit swuishy.

The system really isn't designed to help people any more


MotherOfMinions Wed 17-Aug-16 19:24:21

Good luck, hope you get through this rough patch. Unfortunately the job centres do seem to make it very very difficult to make a new claim.

Andbabymakesthree Wed 17-Aug-16 19:31:26

Have they done the student loan calculations right? What's your course dates?

peaceloveandtwirlywoos Wed 17-Aug-16 19:33:51


MrsSquishy Wed 17-Aug-16 19:36:10

They have the right information about my Student Finance, I'm presuming they haven't looked closely at what it's made up of but we won't know the reasons for sure until we receive the letter, so around another 5 days. I will get my next payment at the end of September, once that's here we will be ok. It's just going to be a tough next month I suppose!

ClopySow Wed 17-Aug-16 19:37:58

It is really shit. But it is what it is.

I got a credit card in the summer between 2 college years with 0% for the first 6 months. And you can get student accounts with huge 0% overdrafts.

MinnowAndTheBear Wed 17-Aug-16 19:40:07

Most uni courses have an official end date of Mid-June. Can you check that this is when they stopped taking your uni money into account. I can't remember any guidance specifically relating to "childcare grants" but if they have taken this money in to account then you could ask for a reconsideration of this decision to make sure they have correctly applied the guidance to your circumstances.

MinnowAndTheBear Wed 17-Aug-16 19:41:16

Cross posted. I assumed you had finished uni completely. Ignore that bit about the course end-date b

HermioneWeasley Wed 17-Aug-16 19:42:22

When your DH lost his job, didn't he get any notice pay?

Andbabymakesthree Wed 17-Aug-16 19:46:35

What minnow said

Andbabymakesthree Wed 17-Aug-16 19:50:07

Look at this link. Whilst it's mainly talks about Income support the way income is treated on income based JSA claims is largely the same.

Andbabymakesthree Wed 17-Aug-16 19:52:17

Income Support is a means tested benefit and therefore student income is taken into account when assessing entitlement. Normally Student Support Income is treated as income by the Department of Work and Pensions for 42/43 weeks of the year from the first benefit week in September (or from the first day of the course for first year students) to the last benefit week in June-(3/9/012-24/6/013and2/9/013-30/6/013)-you can therefore claim Income Support from 24/6/013-2/9/013 if you satisfy the conditions.

The Student Maintenance Loan and the Adult Dependants Grant, and Maintenance Grant are counted as income but subject to certain disregards –the Parental Learning Allowance, Childcare Grant, Special Support Grant are disregarded in full. Some University Bursaries are also disregarded.

For first year students student income is taken into account from the date you register, and for final year students your student income ends when you finish the course.

caroldecker Wed 17-Aug-16 19:52:56

this says childcare grants are ignored.

ghostspirit Wed 17-Aug-16 20:04:42

do you get childtax credits. housing benefit is paid in arrears it will be back dated.

although if he now has a job he will not need to claim job seekers now. you might be able to get some sort of help though depending on earnings.

Andbabymakesthree Wed 17-Aug-16 20:10:42

He's entitled to claim JSA up until the day before he starts with as long as he continues to job search and sign on :-)

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