If you (and your partner) have total savings of £6,000 or less you do not need to enter an amount, as the first £6,000 of savings is ignored, this is called the lower capital limit.
You cannot get any of the means-tested benefits (income-related Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker's Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit or Universal Credit) if your capital is above the upper limit of £16,000.
Council Tax Support is locally administered for working age customers and the capital limits depend on your local scheme.
If you (and your partner) have total savings over £6,000 you should enter the total amount of savings you and your partner have on the savings page. The calculator will automatically work out how much of it will count as income. You should enter your savings without taking off the £6,000 ignored by the government.
The calculator works out the weekly income the government assumes you get on these savings when assessing your benefit entitlement (this is shown by the box 'Assumed weekly income from savings'). If you are under 60 the government assumes you receive £1 per week for every £250 (or part of £250) of savings you have above £6,000.
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE CALCULATOR USES THE GOVERNMENT'S FORMULA FOR CALCULATING INCOME FROM SAVINGS. The amount we calculate is not meant to represent the amount of income you actually receive from your savings.
You should count as savings money that you can access relatively easily or financial products that can be sold on. The definition of savings for the means test in benefits includes:
Note that any actual income these assets generate is ignored.
Your capital is generally valued at its current market or surrender value less 10% if there would be costs involved in selling and less any debt secured on a property.
If you own capital jointly with other people you would normally be assessed as having an equal share.
The following do not count as savings:
Other disregards include:
If you deprive yourself of capital in order to increase the amount of benefit you get you can be treated as if you still had that capital, this is called ‘notional capital’. This might occur if you give money away to members of your family or buy expensive items in order to reduce your capital.
You will not be considered to have deprived yourself of capital if you have paid off debts or used money for ‘reasonable’ spending on goods and services.
If you are refused benefit because of notional capital you should seek advice and consider appealing against the decision.