Universal Credit
Information on claiming Universal Credit (UK) and training with CodeYourFuture
CodeYourFuture is a registered part-time study course with the UK Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). In short, you should be able to train with CYF and still receive Universal Credit. Should you encounter any issues with your Job Coach, contact your Programme Manager for support.

Going self-employed on Universal Credit

Bottom line for self-employment

  1. 1.
    You need a credible business plan
  2. 2.
    After your ‘start up period’, you will have your benefit income reduced by the rate of minimum wage at 35 hours per week, whether you are earning this or not.
  3. 3.
    You have to report your earnings once a month to Universal Credit, but these can be zero.

But you will have no other Conditionality

You can get a start up period once every 5 years. So you essentially get up to one conditionality free year every 5 years where you don’t have to do job searching and can use that time to develop yourself professionally. (You also can apply for a start up loan.)
The self employment rules on Universal Credit are much more stringent than the Tax Credits rules, but you still get up to a year to give it a go. If you have a marketable skill, some work opportunities, and a credible plan to be off benefits within a year, it’s a perfectly reasonable position to go self employed.
Crucially, if you are accepted as gainfully self-employed, you do not have to look for work at all. You will be moved to the light touch regime.
The rules for people on Tax Credits, ESA, Income Support, Carer’s Allowance, or other legacy benefits are different. This information is only about Universal Credit.
If this seems right for you, then
  1. 1.
    Write a business plan (see here)
  2. 3.
    Agree your start up period with your work coach and get a new Claimant Commitment. You should ask for one year.
Links and resources