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There’s a limit on the total amount of benefit that most working age people can get. This is called the benefit cap.

Read more about the benefit cap on the Gov.uk website.

Use the benefit cap calculator to find out if the cap affects you, and how much your benefits could go down by. 

If you're affected by the cap, your Housing Benefit goes down to make sure the total amount of benefit you get isn't more than the cap level.

How much is the benefit cap?

  • £384.62 a week for couples
  • £384.62 a week for single parents whose children live with them
  • £257.69 a week for single adults who don't have children, or whose children don't live with them.

Who isn't affected? 

You’re not affected by the cap if you or your partner:

  • are over Pension Credit age
  • work enough hours to get Working Tax Credit (even if you're not claiming it)
  • get Universal Credit and you and your partner earn more than £569 a month combined, after tax and National Insurance
  • get Universal Credit because of a disability or condition that stops you from working (this is called ‘limited capability for work and work-related activity’)
  • get Universal Credit because you care for someone with a disability

You’re also not affected by the benefit cap if you, your partner or any dependent children living with you get any of the following benefits:

  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Personal Independence Payment
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Armed Forces Compensation scheme
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment
  • Industrial Injuries Benefits (and equivalent payments as part of a war disablement pension or the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme)
  • Employment and Support Allowance, if you get the support component
  • War Pension
  • War Widow's or War Widower's Pension
  • Carer's Allowance
  • Guardian's Allowance

People who lose their jobs through no fault of their own, after being employed for 50 out of 52 weeks and who were working 16 hours in the last week of work, will be exempt from the cap for a grace period of up to 39 weeks when they make a new claim.

Example

A family has a weekly income from benefits of £414.62, including £100 Housing Benefit. This means their income is £30 above the cap amount, which is £384.62 for them. Their Housing Benefit reduces by £30 (from £100 to £70) to bring their total income down to the £384.62 limit. They have £30 more rent to pay and will need to use £30 from their other benefits for this.

Read more about the benefit cap on the Gov.uk website.

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