Further information and an online calculator are available giving you an estimate of how much lower your benefit might be if you get more than the benefit cap levels. A helpline is also available for you to call. The number is 0845 605 7064 or textphone 0845 608 8551 for people with hearing or speech impairments. The helpline is open Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm.
Discretionary Housing payment
If you are affected by the Benefit cap and are now struggling to pay your rent because the cap has reduced your Housing Benefit or the Housing element of your Universal Credit, you should consider applying to your local authority for a Discretionary Housing Payment to help with the shortfall. See our Discretionary Housing Payment information page.
You may want to increase your work hours so that you are exempt from the cap. Finding work could also mean that the cap wouldn’t apply to you as qualifying for Working Tax Credit will mean these rules do not apply. If you are not already seeing a Jobcentre Plus adviser, or a Work Programme or Work Choice provider, you can get support from Jobcentre Plus to help you with the skills you may need to find a job. To arrange this you will need to ring Jobcentre Plus on 0845 604 3719
If you are eligible for a disability benefit that you are not claiming, you may want to claim it to become exempt from the cap. Check out Turn2us benefit calculator. Alternatively visit your nearest local advice centre.
You may also consider moving into cheaper accommodation or negotiate a rent reduction to one which is more affordable. This could mean that the cap will not apply to you or that the amount you have to pay from your other benefits to make up the rent shortfall is much less.