Universal credit is currently in demand at an unprecedented rate and is likely to be in high demand from the self-employed. Those who work for themselves are struggling right now and while the Self-Employed Income Assistance program may help some, many will not be eligible.
There is also another consideration that may worry some self-employed job seekers.
Currently, people with more than £ 16,000 in savings cannot receive universal credit at all.
Applicants with savings of between £ 6,000 and £ 16,000 will be able to receive payments, but they will be reduced.
Self-employed people may worry if the assets they have for their business (such as machinery or equipment) will also have a negative impact on the payment of their benefits.
Fortunately, the company’s assets will not be taken into account when calculating the amount an applicant will receive.
As Understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk detailed, “If you aren’t going to wind up your business, you won’t need to sell your business assets to apply for universal credit.
“They won’t be taken into account when you apply for universal credit, nor will they be taken into account when we determine the amount of universal credit to which you are entitled.
“Business assets include items such as machinery, premises and cash held in your business account. “
The government has made changes to the universal credit system in recent months to accommodate struggling workers.
Self-employed people benefit from some of these changes since the minimum income threshold has been temporarily abolished.
In the March 2020 budget, Rishi Sunak confirmed the following changes, with many additional updates made in the following months: income floor in universal credit.
“And I am relaxing the obligation for anyone to physically go to an employment center; everything can be done by phone or online.
“Taken together, these measures on ESA and universal credit provide a boost of almost £ 0.5 billion to our social protection system. “