Prime Minister David Cameron has set out 17 proposed reforms of the welfare state in a bid to find £10bn worth of spending cuts.
Here, we outline the measures which could affect your clients in condensed form. (with thanks to The Guardian, which did the donkey work on this).
The new measures
1 Removing access to housing benefit for anyone aged 16-24, a move that would save £2bn a year and affect 210,000 social housing tenants. There would be some exemptions.
2 Banning anyone earning above £60,000 from access to a council house tenancy, affecting 12,000 to 34,000 households. Alternatively, restrict access to council housing to anyone earning more than £100,000, affecting 1,000 to 6,000 council tenants.
David Cameron's 17 welfare reform ideas...condensed
3 Breaking the link between benefits and inflation, and considering linking benefits to average earnings. Cameron argues benefits were increased by 5.2% last year, in line with inflation, yet this was almost twice as much as the average wage increase. If working-age benefits had been uprated in line with earnings, the increase would have been only uprated by 2.5%, instead of 5.2%, saving £5bn.
4 Time-limiting benefits by reducing their levels if someone is out of work for longer periods. Cameron says: "It is extraordinary that there are 1.4 million people in this country who have been out of work for at least nine of the past 10 years."
5 Imposing a new specific cap on housing benefit so that it is worth no more at current prices than £20,000 a year, 25% higher than the average rent in London and sufficient to require an £80,000-a-year salary to pay, roughly the salary of those in the top 5% of earners.
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