Jobseeker's Allowance is a benefit paid to those who are actively seeking work and are currently unemployed. It is administered through the Jobcenter Plus and is available to those who have made enough National Security contributions. However, if a claimant has not made enough contributions, they may be entitled to an Income-Based Job Seekers Allowance.

Need to Know What Jobseekers Allowance Is?

The Job Centre is responsible for ensuring that people who receive benefits are actively seeking employment and fulfilling their responsibilities under the Jobseeker's Allowance. There are two types of Jobseeker's Allowances - the contribution-based Jobseeker's Allowance and the income-based Jobseeker's Allowance.

Contribution-based Jobseeker's Allowance

The contribution-based Jobseeker's Allowance is based on the amount of National Insurance a person has paid in the previous two years. It is paid for up to 182 days and is for those who have made enough National Insurance contributions.

It is important to note that the contribution-based Jobseeker's Allowance is not affected by the claimant's income or savings.

Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance

The income-based Jobseeker's Allowance is based on the claimant's income and savings. It is available for those who have not made enough National Insurance contributions. The amount a person receives depends on their circumstances.

It is important to note that to qualify for Jobseeker's Allowance, a person must meet certain criteria. They must be actively looking for work, have savings less than a certain amount, be able to work for at least 40 hours a week, have paid enough National Insurance on their income, be over 18 and under State Pension age, have a 'jobseeker's agreement', not be in education, and live in Great Britain.

Jobseeker's Agreement

The 'jobseeker's agreement' sets out the steps a person will take to find work. A person will be required to come into the Jobcentre when asked to, at least once every two weeks, to sign a statement saying that they have been looking for work and nothing has changed that could affect their Jobseeker's Allowance.

If a person left their previous job or were dismissed because of misconduct, Jobcentre Plus will make a decision based on several factors to decide if they are eligible for Jobseeker's Allowance.

If a person is not free to accept work if they do not look for training or work, or if they do not have a current jobseeker's agreement, they could be disqualified from receiving Jobseeker's Allowance. If they turn down work or leave a job or training without a valid reason, they could also lose their Jobseeker's Allowance.

Part-time education or training

If a person is in part-time education or training, they may still be able to claim Jobseeker's Allowance as long as they are ready to work and looking for work. If they have been out of work for three months or more before starting their courses, they may be able to continue receiving Jobseeker's Allowance if they are able to arrange their schedule to allow for work and be prepared to give up the course if they are offered a job.

However, if a person is under 20 years old and in school, they will not be able to get Jobseeker's Allowance but may be able to get Income Support.

Working short time or laid off

If a person is working short time or is laid off for a while until they start full-time work again, they may qualify for Jobseeker's Allowance. To receive Jobseeker's Allowance while working short time, they must be able to work and looking for work.

A person is considered able to work if they are working less than 16 hours per week, earning less than the minimum amount that the government says they need to live on, are ready to start their usual job, and ready to take up casual work to make their hours total up to at least 40 hours per week. After the first 13 weeks of their short time work, they will have to meet the normal rules for getting Jobseeker's Allowance.