Cutting it fine
I'm a self employed hairdresser, but I've just lost my job. Can I claim Jobseeker's Allowance after being self employed? If not, are there any benefits I can claim? I have no children and I share a rented flat with my boyfriend.
The fact that you have been self employed shouldn't, in itself, stop you from getting Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA), but as you've been self employed you won't have paid class one National Insurance contributions. This means you won't be able to claim contribution based JSA because this is based on having paid enough class one contributions during the previous two tax years.
In addition, because you're living with your boyfriend you might not be able to claim income based JSA if your partner works full time. This is because he will be expected to provide for you.
However, as you're in rented accommodation you and your boyfriend could apply for Local Housing Allowance - the new way of calculating Housing Benefit (HB) for tenants. This is means-tested and based on your joint income and local rental values. However, if you are aged under 25, are single and do not live with any dependants, you can only get the shared room rate. At the same time as claiming HB, you may want to consider claiming Council Tax Benefit. This is also based on your joint income. To claim this, you would need to contact your local council and request a claim form.
Question answered by CAB