Social Security Law

Within this essay we are asked to comment on Stacey’s entitlement to income support.
To do this we must examine the nature of Bradley and Stacey’s relationship and consider the effect Stacey’s sewing and working at her friend’s café will have on her entitlement to claim income support.

Essentially, Income Support is a means tested, benefit paid to certain groups of people who do not have enough money to live on. As it is means-tested, any money that a person has or receives is taken into account in deciding whether someone should receive Income Support.[1]
In addition, Income Support is a non-contributory benefit. This means that Income Support can be claimed even if a person has never paid national insurance.

There is no need to examine whether Stacey is initially entitled to income support as she is already in receipt of it thus she must have already satisfied the conditions of entitlement under s.124-134 of the Social Security Contribution and Benefits Act 1992 [2]
We simply must examine if Stacey is entitled to continue receiving her income support.

The first question we must ask is how will Stacey’s relationship with Bradley effect her entitlement?

Section 124 (1) (c) of the Act states that “…if he/she is a member of a married or unmarried couple the other member should not be engaged in remunerative work”. [3]

The word “unmarried” here means “a man and a woman who are not married to each other but are living together as husband and wife. Otherwise than in prescribed circumstances”[4].
The Civil Partnership Act states the same for same sex unmarried cohabiting couples too. [5]

If Stacey and Bradley are regarded as an unmarried couple when making any calculation regarding Stacey’s eligibility for Income Support Bradley’s financial circumstances would have to be taken into account.
This is called the principal of Aggregation.
“Where a person is claiming income related benefit is a member of a family, income and capital of any member of...