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Awan-Legal, Solicitor
Category: UK Employment Law
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Experience:  Expert
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My neice and her husband are both professionals(teachers) who

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My neice and her husband are both professionals(teachers) who have found it very difficult to find full time employment since they returned to the U.K. They both worked abroad for 5 years and now on top band salary of their grade. However, they are having to do supplies/agency teaching which does not bring in enough ,money to pay their bills. Employment is haphazard as the work is not constant - only used if their is a need and of ten means travelling far to the schools. Their parents have been helping them out financially, but it is now coming to a point where they are reluctant to continue the support. There are teaching assistant jobs out there, but they feel bitter about down grading when they are qualified teachers. They have also been reluctant to apply sign on. I think pride seems to have come into play. They feel that they should continue to shoulder on and hope agency work increases. Obviously during the school holidays, agency work ends. They are attemting to open up a clothing business, but the market is very slow and what they eventually sell does not cover their overhead cost.
Should they sign on at the job centre?
Would they be entitled to housing benefit,council tax releif?
They have a 3 yr old child.
If they decide to continue with the business, would they need to start paying tax and would they have to register as self employed?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: UK Employment Law
Expert:  Awan-Legal replied 5 years ago.

Awan-Legal : Hi
Awan-Legal : Sorry to hear about their troubles.
Awan-Legal : They are entitled to council tax benefit if their income is low and their expenses are higher.
Awan-Legal : They would also be entitled to child tax credit and child benefit.
Awan-Legal : It is likely that they will also be eligible for housing benefits.
Awan-Legal : More information can be found here:
Awan-Legal :
Awan-Legal : Here is a link to calculate their entitlement to child tax credit:
Awan-Legal :
Awan-Legal : They can apply for jobseekers allowance whilst they are looking for work and will be required to sign on at the local job centre regularly (mainly fortnightly):
Awan-Legal :
Awan-Legal : They should approach the local council to claim council tax benefit and housing benefit.
Awan-Legal : The tax credits helpline number is XXXXX(NNN) NNN-NNNNwho will assess you over the phone and send out an application form for child tax credit.
Awan-Legal : The child benefit helpline number is XXXXX(NNN) NNN-NNNN
Awan-Legal : They would need to register as self employed with the hmrc and pay tax if their income is over a certain threshold and would need to consult an accountant to assist with this.
Awan-Legal : They are still eligible to apply for the above benefits if they are self employed and earning a low income. They may also be eligible for working tax credit if they are in self employment and should claim at the same time as child tax credit.
Awan-Legal : If self employed they cannot apply for job seekers allowance though as this is for those actively looking for work but they can instead apply for working tax credits as above.
Awan-Legal : I hope this has been helpful. If so, kindly leave positive feedback.
Awan-Legal : Ps they should claim as it will help them get back on their feet. If they are able to secure full time teaching jobs or do well on the business, then they can stop claiming.
Awan-Legal : I hope that has been helpful, thanks.
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