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JSA and Zero Hour contract
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# 1
Old 14-07-2010, 6:45 PM
MoneySaving Stalwart
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Scotland
Posts: 464
Default JSA and Zero Hour contract


Last edited by purplerose; 24-10-2010 at 11:27 AM.
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# 2
Old 14-07-2010, 8:35 PM
MoneySaving Convert
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Staffs
Posts: 127

I have a situation similar to a zero hours contract - I do some casual security work, always for the same employer.
I've been claiming JSA for the majority of the last 11 weeks since losing my full time job.
Basically when I first signed on, I told them that I do some casual work, and that the hours aren't regular. They told me to fill out a B7 form every time I sign on.

If you work regular part time hours, they try to establish some kind of cycle in the hours that you work over a period of time, and I think they're supposed to average it out. But seeing as there are no regular hours with my work, they have to treat every occasion that I work separately.

Every fortnight when I go in to sign, I take in a completed B7 form detailing the hours that I've worked in the previous fortnight, and any money I've been paid during that time for work previously declared. They then recalculate the JSA that I'm due, but that amount doesn't tend to kick in until the payment I'm due two weeks later (after the next time I sign on). At which point I have submitted another B7, and they recalculate again. So the amount of JSA you get will change on a fortnightly basis. If you're single, they allow you the first 5 of your wages in any week, then deduct the rest penny for penny from any JSA that you're entitled to. Which means that as soon as you've earned 70.45, you no longer receive any benefits (even though the 'entitlement' still stands).

Which all works fine until you know you're going to be doing 16 hours or more in the week ahead.

I spoke to several people at the job centre and also on the phone, who told me to sign off as soon as I knew I was going to hit 16 hours, then do a rapid reclaim to sign on again afterwards.

And the crazy thing is, as long as you're not signed on, you can earn as much as you want... then sign on again afterwards when the work is over !!!!
I'm sure they would soon cotton on to this though if someone was doing it every weekend !
Google is my friend .....
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