What does Budget 2020 mean for you?
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, has revealed his first Budget. But what does it mean for you?
Here are some of the key points:
- Temporarily, statutory Sick Pay (SSP) will be paid from day one for people who have COVID-19, instead of day four which is currently the case.
- SSP will be available to those who have to self-isolate, and these individuals will be able to get a sick note by calling 111, rather than having to visit a GP
- Temporarily, New-style or contributory ESA will be paid from day one of sickness for those directly affected by COVID-19, instead of the normal day eight
- The DWP will temporarily remove minimum income floor for gainfully self-employed people claiming Universal Credit
- You will be able to do all your Jobcentre appointments over the phone temporarily
- A £500m Hardship Fund will be made available to local authorities in England to support people with Coronavirus
- From October 2021, Universal Credit claimants will be able to repay new claim advances over 24 months instead of 12 months
- The cap on Universal Credit deductions will be reduced and will not normally exceed 25% of a claimant’s standard allowance
- For Personal Independence Payment a minimum period of 18 months between claimants’ award reviews is being introduced; this ensures that all PIP claimants will not have an award period of less than 18 months
Income and taxation
- Low Pay Commission will have a fixed target that the minimum wage should be two-thirds of Median Earning by 2024, assuming favourable economic situation.
- Increase of the National Insurance Threshold from £8,632 to £9,500; this means that you will not have to pay National Insurance if your earnings are below £9,500.
- The tampon tax will be abolished in full from January 2021
- Fuel duty to remain frozen for another year
- £643m to help rough sleepers into permanent accommodation
David Samson, Welfare Benefit Specialist at Turn2us, said:
“One in five people in the UK live in poverty; and many of today’s Budget announcements go some way in acknowledging this.
“We welcome policies to protect low income workers from missing out on pay due to coronavirus, increases in the national living wage and the abolishment of the tampon tax.
“However, if the government is serious about tackling inequality, it would have ended the five week wait for Universal Credit; restored the value of benefits with an above-inflation rise; and ensured all local authorities provide crisis support through local welfare assistance schemes as a matter of course. These recommended policies would go much further to improve the day to day lives of people who don’t have enough money to live on; and are the practical steps they are asking for.
“We want to work with the Government to lift people out of poverty, strengthen our welfare safety net and enable all our communities to thrive.”