There’s an interesting article in the Guardian today about unemployed professional people and Jobcentres.
Key point: Some people are being told they don’t qualify for Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) because they have savings, or their spouse is working. But contributory JSA of ?64.30 a week is payable to anyone who has paid national insurance for the preceding two years.
This guy wasn’t told about it though:
Magazine editor David Freedman, 38, from London, was made redundant in December and has also struggled to get help. “It’s my first time out of work since I was 24,” he says. “It was quite a shock and, because I’d only been in my job 14 months, I didn’t get redundancy pay.”
Freedman did sign on at his local Jobcentre – but only in order to qualify for the mortgage protection insurance he had taken out while working….
Freedman, whose wife is disabled but works part-time, says it took “forever” to sort out his claim and he was then told he wasn’t entitled to any form of JSA due to his wife’s salary and the fact that she had savings. “I’ve had no income for six months,” he says. “Thank God I took out mortgage protection insurance or I’d have to sell my house.”
According to government guidelines, Freedman should be entitled to weekly contributory JSA of ?64.30, irrespective of his wife’s earnings or any savings. It’s not much but it can make a difference if you are struggling, yet Freedman says he wasn’t told this.