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Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) - Can I get Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA)?

Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) is a benefit for people who are not in full time employment (work less than 16 hours per week), are capable of working and are looking for work.

Can I get Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA)?

Contribution-based/New-style Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA).

You can get this for up to six months if you have been working and have paid enough national insurance contributions within the last couple of years. It is paid just for you even if you have a partner.  

You can get Contribution-based/New Style JSA at the same time as Universal Credit.  

A new claim for Contribution-based JSA is also known as a new claim for New-style Jobseeker's Allowance.

Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)

It is no longer possible for most people to make new claims for income-based Jobseeker's Allowance. It has been replaced by Universal Credit. If you or your partner are receiving a 'legacy benefit' such as Child Tax Credit or Housing Benefit, you will lose these if you make a claim for Universal Credit.  

You can find out whether you can still claim income-based JSA by using our Benefits Calculator or by seeking advice. You can find an advice agency in your area by using our Find an Adviser tool.   

If you are already getting income-based JSA, you can carry on getting it until you stop meeting the qualifying conditions, unless you claim Universal Credit.

The qualifying conditions for getting income-based JSA are:

  • You and (your partner's) income is low enough, and
  • You and (your partner's) savings and capital are below £16,000, and
  • You are available for work and actively seeking work, and
  • You are under Pension age, and
  • You must not be working, or working fewer than 16 hours a week, and
  • If you have a partner, they must not be working or working fewer than 24 hours a week.

Updated: January 2021

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