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  1. I am self employed and my earnings vary a lot often for a short period oftime. My housing benefit claim was already close once because my earnings weretoo high. However the problem is that my earnings vary a lot often for asmall period of time and it is inconvenient for me to make a new claim forhousing benefit each time my earnings vary. I would like to know how to explainmy situation to the housing benefit department to avoid that my claim is closedeach time my earnings vary temporarily I would like to know if there is a specific law for self employer or if I have to file a specific form
  2. Hi, my mum is buying a property (effectively in cash) using money from family members. large bulk of money has been transferred from her cousin who is 89 yrs old. Countrywide have had the building society account book to show her savings but then they said it wasn't old enough and needed to go back a few years and we've done this. then they said they wanted a letter stating the income and job of the cousin from when she started working as well as an account of her lifestyle to prove how she's accumulated her savings and we provided this but now this isn't good enough either, they now want details of the earnings of her dead husband (who died last year at aged 97)! We understand about the money laundering aspect but this is becoming increasingly ridiculous - even the tax man doesn't keep records going back that far! We've said we'll change solicitors but then countrywide sayif we do that we just have to start from scratch and we're supposed to be completing on 12th December. Bank statements from other members of the family have been accepted. has anyone got any advice, thanks. the sum involved from the cousin is £130,000 and will be a short term loan.
  3. Hi Just looking for some advice for a friend. A friend has just received a letter to attend a compliance interview and she's worried big style - its NOT an interview under caution. Four years ago she received some inheritance that took her close to the £16000 mark but not over, she was on incapacity benefit at the time and she was told the savings would not affect her benefits - pretty much all of the money was spent on adapting her home. She was moved to ESA last year and then onto income based ESA a few moths back and her savings have been pretty much zero since 2011. The Job Centre now want her to provide bank statements for the short period she had the inheritance in her account four years ago. She has spoken to welfare rights and they didn't know why she would be pulled in for that as the benefits she was receiving were not means tested at the time. They suggested that she may have been on some smaller component that was means tested but she has every letter ever sent to her regarding benefits and she has never been on anything that was means tested. Other than that it could be a mistake on their part. Has anyone else been through a similar situation?
  4. Was after some advice on savings. I'm a single mum to two children and I live with them but no partner. I claim Income Support as a Carer, Carer's Allowance, Housing Benefit, Council Tax Support, Child Benefit and Child Tax Credits. Both children receive DLA - Middle Rate Care and one gets Lower Rate Mobility. I also get CSA from the kids dad. I had a phone call from the DWP last week, they wanted to check the information they had for me was correct. Lasted about 15-20 minutes and they asked a lot of questions about who lives with me and what we claim etc. The only question I couldn't answer was how much I had in my bank account as I hadn't checked it that day and wouldn't have liked to have guessed. Got a letter a few days later saying based on the information I gave the amount of benefit I get won't change. Today I've had a letter saying I have to send in bank statements for me and my children I do have some savings in a seperate account. About £1000. Obviously I will send in bank statements for that account as well as my current account and the kids savings accounts. I have nothing to hide but will having that amount affect my benefit? Edited to say I have always phoned the DWP with any changes to what myself or the kids receive
  5. My sister has some life long mental health issues and has been getting ESA and DLA benefits for some time now. She is saving for when she gets a council property but because of the long wait to get this property, about 2 and half years now, her savings have gone past the £16,000 limit for the ESA. Is it just a case of spending the money to drop below the £16,000 and keeping it below that limit to make sure she remains entitled to keep the ESA benefit? I don't want her to lose it, finally get a council property but have her means to pay for it restricted. I've heard is hard to get it back if you lose it. She doesn't have any large regular expenditures, she currently lives with our parents can they back date rent payments to help her bring it down?
  6. I realise the limit for savings is 6000.00 when on benefits , but what I don't understand is how any surplus money could be considered any more fraudulent than someone who is spending all their money on things that have no relevance to their needs i.e. satellite , booze , excess food etc The reason I ask is because while being as bad as I am ( bed bound 4 yrs ) I have saved more than I thought ( over 6000,00 ) because of my physical limitations and inability to lead a " normal life " ( even by most disabled standards ) i.e. not being able to drive or own a vehicle or using a carer ( my mother has helped ) , or going out to spend money due to being housebound ,or using phones because I can barely talk / have no one talk to any way etc etc I also never had my flat adapted or been able to seek treatments because there's none that exist here ( which is not my fault ) without traveling ( Which I have been unable to do ) or go to America ( which is far more than I can afford ) to get an operation. ( which is available there but not in the UK ) I am pretty annoyed by this because I feel that this lack of service in this country for my condition not only borders on discrimination but negligence too , and as result denies me the same rights more common disabilities have to be catered for in way that leads to them having less money ( Because they have something that helps them ) I mean if there is possible cure / treatments and it is only available in the US and not here , why should someone be punished for saving for a chance to help themselves rather than the person who chooses to waste it all on indulgences ? To me that is unfair, belittling and just encouraging someone with no choices or options ( through no fault of their own ) to blow money for fear they will be punished for a service their government doesn't provide. Are there any cases where exemptions for conditions / circumstances are made by the DWP or does the one rule fit all mean some will forever be doomed to never get the chance for treatments more popular conditions by default get ? Mike
  7. How to reduce your tax bill by thousands of pounds by arranging joint savings accounts carefully Savers can slash hundreds of pounds from their tax bill by using a little-known loophole relating to the treatment of joint accounts. The rules governing the payment of tax on joint deposits used to be fairly relaxed. Couples could decide which account holder paid the tax, in some cases allowing them to avoid deductions altogether. In 2011 a new regime was introduced, which tightened up procedures, making the management of these accounts more arduous. But you can still boost your income by up to 40pc if you get to grips with the new rules and learn to exploit them to the full. Here are our five top tips for cutting your tax bill while keeping your money safe and ensuring a top return. More: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/savings/10775097/Loophole-for-couples-to-cut-tax-on-savings.html
  8. I have a debt from 1990 being collected by Robinson Way & Co. the Loan amount was £5735.00 which included £735.00 of PPI. APR was 29.84%. I paid almost £7600.00 off and got into difficulties, moved house and prayed for the best. Robinson Way tracked me down, scaling the Rear fence, knocking on doors etc and ringing my workplace. I have been paying Robinson way £32.00 per Month now for as long as I can remember. I have a letter from them saying they have purchased and are wholly repsonsible for the administration of the account / debt in 2006. I requested a copy of the agreement which was sent back and therefore believe that I have to continue paying this. I still Owe £3400.00 on the account. their letters now state that the account is due to Hoist group (ex western trust) and I have never had any record on my Credit scrore indicating the account. Any advice on this one, they send me 2 duplicate letters each month stating the account is overdue. many thanks if anyone can help
  9. Hi. Have just found an old National Savings Bank book of mine. Last transaction was about 1999 and there's only £3.50 in it - does anyone know if I can still take it into a post office and take out the money? I might as well have it, if I can.
  10. I had no clue that when i claimed jsa that my claim would be affected if i had between 6k and 16k in savings so didnt think to tell them what i had. Recently the customer compliance unit got in touch and demanded up to date totals in my account and jsa subsequently docked my benefit by £13 per week. Now they want to know how i amassed the 9k in my bank. before i claimed jsa i did not work but did gamble in poker clubs etc with good wins and i banked the money. Its legally and rightfully mine and i no longer gamble which is the reason im on jsa to try and gain long term employment but will anything come of my decision to tell them that i got it from gambling before i even claimed any money from them? Any info would be greatly appreciated. Joe
  11. I have been told the amount I will get in backdated DLA, its on the way and approved, the DWP didnt bother asking for a statement of reasons from the tribunal. I have a new problem that my bank balance as a result of 2 years backdated DLA will be hovering around the £6000 mark it will actually be probably going above and below £6000 over the course of each month as expenses go out and income goes in. I am now very grateful for the reward so I am not too concerned about having my housing benefit deducted for been a bit over £6000, what is bothering me is the potential trouble of informing them every time my money goes above or below 6000 and each time of course the claim been suspended. If I were to say my savings are 6500 and simply dont inform them afterwards until I am well below 6000 again would that be fraud? as that will amount to underpayments not overpayments. So I assume I am ok to do that?
  12. Does my childs mother have any right to see my bank details and payslips? specifically any savings or investments i might have. she seems to think that she is entitled to 15% of any savings i have as well as 15% of my monthly pay. we have a private arrangement for maintenance. She had told me she is going to contact the CSA if she does not get to see this information and refuse to let me see my son. i have asked her where she got this information and what law she is quoting but all she says is she has got it from "a friend". we were never married or in a relationship and i pay maintenance (15%) I see my son as much a finances permit (i live 200 miles away) personally, i think she is either misinformed or more likely out for all she can get but i will happily eat my words if there is a law entitling her to 15% of my savings.
  13. Morning All, I have got into an absolute mess with my JSA from not understanding all the rules I discovered last week that I have been overpaid because of savings (£8000). This has led me to start googling and reading forums and now I have learnt that I should not go on a UK holiday without informing them which Ive done three times [bangs head on table]. Incidently Im talking about 4 day breaks. I assume if you have a night away in a hotel - that doesnt count as a holiday ?!? I had no idea about these facts - Why they dont give you a list of dos and donts when you register is beyond me. How else are you supposed to know? Its not like a 'career' where you learn about the job and research it. I signed on for help and thought that was that!!! Anyway - Whats done is done ... What is going to happen? I know I need to pay back for money they have over paid me. Could there be any other implications for these two failures? Im mainly concerned about any criminial investigations ?!?! I'm going to sign off now until the new year anyway as all this is making me ill and its just not worth it for £70 a month. But just need to get all this rubbish resolved. Any advice as always is much appreciated. James
  14. I'm currently filling out my housing benefit and have under £23,500 ( which I read somewhere was the cut off ) but reasonably close because I've not been out spending cash on things due to being housebound. 3000 of that is in Isa and the rest - or 15,000 -is in my current / saving accounts at the same bank. Will this be penalised in an way. if I'm between say 18,000 and 23.5000 , and if so what are my options ? thanks again , mike
  15. Hi,going through incapacity to esa at the moment, Can anybody tell me what savings are allowed,I am married but my doesn't work ? thanks
  16. Hi all, just a complicated question, after splitting from the ex(not married) 3 years ago, I had to fight to get my share of the equity of the house which I finally got 4 weeks ago to the sum of £80000. (the ex has £300000 in a bank account) I have paid CSA from day one but also all the mortgage. (I switched from repayment to interest only. She had her new boyfriend move in 2 years ago and basically he lived there scot free. She is paying day to day bills.I have had to live on families sofas in this time. Last week I was handed my redundancy at my job. Now as I have been given 3 months continuous pay then the lump sum at the end, my understanding is that I will have to carry on paying the full amount until the 3 months is up. question 1 Can the CSA take a lump sum out of my £80000? 2 will I need to be reassessed at the end of 3 months 3 is there and upper/lower limit on savings i can have? I know that as soon as she finds out i have been made redundant she will inform the CSA about the money she had to give me, But ideally I want that money so i can put a deposit down on a house at some point. If this is posted in the wrong forum sorry!! Pete
  17. Savings rates across the market continue to drop as banks and building societies spurn private depositors. Savings institutions are competing in a "race to the bottom" as rates continue to fall across the market. The latest cuts are being implemented by Britain’s biggest building society, Nationwide, which has historically offered consistently competitive - if not chart-topping - depositor rates on its own accounts and through its subsidiaries which include Cheshire and Dunfermline. It says the cuts are being made to move the society’s deals "in line" with rivals’ falling rates. "What we’ve seen is that our rates are out of sync," a spokeswoman said. So the popular Isa Saver under Nationwide’s regional Cheshire brand, for instance, was paying 2.3pc (issue 3) last week, but is now cut down for new depositors to 1.7pc (issue 4). The Nationwide MySave Online Plus previously paid 1.7pc (issue 14), but now pays 1.4pc (issue 15). Other cuts apply to fixed rate bonds. Last week a four-year bond paid 2.3pc across all of Nationwide’s brands falling this week for new savers to 1.9pc. The change represents a 21pc cut in returns. On one-year bonds, again across all the society’s brands, rates have dropped from 1.55pc to 1.3pc. The meagre returns for savers - who outnumber the mutual’s borrower customers by about ten to one - is likely to be raised at Nationwide’s upcoming annual meeting, to be held on July 24 in Manchester. More: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/savings/10154479/Nationwide-cuts-rates-across-multiple-savings-accounts.html
  18. ive already posted before about an over payment of benefits ,due to family giving me money over 6k . dwp have reduced our benefits as we have over 6 k , but they still havent 10 months later asked for any overpayment to be paid back . (which worries me ) had an esa assesment last month and passed it np . (some one up there looking after me ) and a £12 per week rise ? (then they complain about giving us too much ) anyway with christmas looming am i entilted to spend any of the money for kids presents or does this not count ? what can you legitemately spend it on which will reduce in there eyes the amount of savings . and how do you submit the evidence that your savings have decreased .
  19. Husband convicted for assault on the children and i. Before That he had sold our previous marital home and moved us into a 'hovel' which left matrimonial sale proceeds to renovate the property. He was made to leave the home and has not provided for the children or I since. He put the remaining sale proceeds from the matrimonial home in my name for tax reasons (not allowed to work.) After he was made to leave by the police I received a letter saying I shouldn't touch these funds as they were joint funds and confirming they were from the sale of the former matrimonial home. I utilized all the monies I had besides these and then started to claim ESA as I'd been badly hurt. He reported me to the fraud because these funds were in my name. However the social services had called in environmental health and they did a hazard report and the children would have been put on the at risk register if I had not used some of these funds to sort the property out (youngest son electrocuted himself, wiring, damp everything unsafe). The benefits office has now decided that despite his solicitors letter saying funds from sale of previous house and there to do up hovel, they count as savings and I've been overpaid. and have to pay it back and repay council tax, school dinners etc. Husband actually had savings and pays nothing towards the children or my upkeep. i suffer PTSD and need operations to put right the injuries inflicted by him. Somewhere i read that funds from the sale of a matrimonial house are not counted as savings if they are to go towards the new property or housing of yourself. Can anybody please give me advice on this. PLEASE
  20. Latest data from Which? reveals the extent to which UK families are struggling to pay for essentials such as food. The group’s April consumer tracker survey shows one in five households (five million) using credit or savings to fill the fridge, as people find they are unable to manage on their monthly incomes. This group is largely made up of low-income families, with four in 10 of these households headed by people aged 30 to 49 years, the majority with children, and an income of £21,000 or less per year. Of those who are using credit or savings to pay for food, the tracker also reveals that: Nearly six in 10 find it difficult to cope on their current income. A third borrowed money from family or friends in the last month. Two-thirds are worried about their level of debt and one in 10 defaulted on a bill last month. Other findings from the April data include: Only a quarter of people say they are living comfortably on their incomes with around a third of respondents feeling the squeeze. More than half of people questioned are worried about their level of savings and two-thirds are worried about interest rates on their savings. Over two-thirds of respondents described the state of the UK economy as poor. Populus, on behalf of Which?, interviewed 2,099 UK adults online between 26th and 28th April 2013 with data then weighted to be demographically representative of all UK adults. Link: http://www.bankingtimes.co.uk/2013/05/05/five-million-households-pay-for-food-with-credit-or-savings/
  21. As I was growing up in (and just before I left at the age of 20, most of the banks there had a 'fixed deposit savings account'. IN short you: 1) Depositied x amount into the account when it was opened and you got interest on that amount 2) DIfference is from here to UK is that you weren't allowed (nor could withdraw money) from the the account within the first year of interest Are there any accounts like that here? Reason I ask is that I'm terrible at saving, and it would be great if I could have a redeemable 'money hole' to throw money in as and when I could and let it build up for year without me draining it before that time. CHeers, A
  22. Hi, I am the user formerly known as BigGreenForest. I havent logged in in ahwile due to health issues while I've beein in and out of hospital a lot, or just too ill to do things. In that time I've managed to forget both my email and CAG passwords. Hotmail have now blocked access to my email due to too many failed password atempts, so I'm forced to start anew. Anyway, I'm in a mess. Regarding my ongoing battle with the Council accusing me of benefit fraud, that finally osrted out. They gave up after 15 months of effort, and my solicitor gathered some evidence that thier manner of what they were doignwas unethical and malitious, that he would have used in court. I'm releived it's all over, but it cost me thousands in solicitors fees. I am in a bad rut in so mnay ways. Before all this happened, and I was working (then got fired when I got ill), I swore I'd never go near benefits again. But then things changed after I lost my job, got ill, and couldn;t find anything else. Despite my health issues (I have ongoing mentail health issues with panic attacks, anxiety, major depression, plus a lot of physical pain, and newer issues such as dizzyness, disorientation and concentration problems since an operation last year) I have been trying to find some kind of part time work. I have not been claiming any benefits so far, and have been living on help from my grandmother, and what savings I have left. But things are starting to run out, and I have a big grey area. When I was working I put some compensation money I recieved into what the bank caleld a Tracker bond. At the time I was unde rthe impression I would be working full time for a loing time, so it made sense to put it into this, where the interest was good, but the catch was that I wasn;t allowed to access the money in the Bond until Mearch 2014. At the time it seemed like a worthwhile sacrifice for the interest, under the impression O would have wages to manage on. in my current situation, with no work, and no benefits, my remaining money has been dwindling at a much bigger than expted rate due to things like a lot of prescription charges and rpair work to my home, which is an ongoing issue. I am due to have to spend something in the region of £2500 on more urgent repairs to the house, I have an £800 council tax bill this year, plus the usual bills, and I am already £450 behind on my energy bill, which I am paying in installments. Quite simply put, I will run out of savings long before I can access the money that's locked in the Bond until next year. What are my situation here? How does inaccessible money count with regards to benefits? I will have a 'dead zone' with no money. Can I resort to council tax benefit and JSA when i run out of money I can gain access to, or will they (as I think), say that I have the money in the Bond, and deny me any benefits as a result? This is an issue I never expected. None of it, the unemployment, the health issues, the problems with the council fraud people, this weird savings grey area. Does anybody know what I can do? Thanks
  23. Hi Having moved back to the UK after living in Spain for 7 years myself & my partner applied for income-based JSA as we were told we would not be entitled to contribution based JSA as we hadn't made any contributions for the last 2 years. Our claim was refused on the basis we have savings over the £16,000 limit. I have a flat in my sole name which is rented out. It made a loss during the last tax year so there was no rental income. There is about £30,000 worth of equity in the flat and having phoned to obtain further info as to why the claim was refused, I was informed it was on the basis of the equity in the property. The flat is currently rented however the tenant is due to move out next month & we are going to move back in. My query is - if we reside in the flat as our principal home, is the equity still taken into account and we would still get nothing? And if it is disregarded can we make an appeal now or would we have to submit a fresh claim after we have moved back in? Many thanks Lisestar
  24. There were nearly 200 savings accounts pulled off the market last month alone. Britain’s savings accounts have been vanishing from the market this year, with 351 disappearing in 2012. Savers can look forward to a tough 2013 as providers that remain announce shocking rate reductions for their existing customers. Furthermore, this drop in interest rates has meant that few savings accounts and Isas are available that beat or even match inflation. Moneyfacts research reveals 351 savings accounts have been withdrawn from the market since the start of the year, with only 2,038 remaining. What is more, 191 of these were withdrawn in November 2012 alone. The research also revealed the number of savings accounts paying above Bank of England base rate of 0.5pc fell by 304 accounts from January 2012, and 162 of these have fallen since the start of November. These developments are attributable to the government’s Funding for Lending scheme, which was launched in July, and is designed to reduce funding costs for banks and building societies so that they can make loans cheaper and more easily available. Sylvia Waycott, of Moneyfacts.co.uk, said: “This year, the November cold snap doesn’t just refer to the weather. The savings market is in meltdown. Link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/savings/9741894/200-savings-accounts-pulled-from-the-market.html
  25. Nationwide has launched a self-service current account paying more interest than most High Street savings accounts. The new FlexDirect account pays customers 1.6 per cent after tax (2 per cent before) on balances up to £2,500 — a rate well above the average 0.74 per cent (0.92 per cent) payable on easy access deals. However, it has been dubbed a self-service account because you won’t be able to do any of your everyday banking at counters in branches. Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/saving/article-2239359/The-Nationwide-bank-account-puts-branches-limits.html#ixzz2DXYAQbOJ
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