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  • FIRST POST
    XEO25
    New Enterprise Allowance scheme - My story
    • #1
    • 9th Aug 11, 2:41 PM
    New Enterprise Allowance scheme - My story 9th Aug 11 at 2:41 PM
    I've used this forum for years but never really gave anything back. I plan to keep this thread as an online diary of my experience during the New Enterprise Allowance scheme. Hopefully it will encourage others to give it a go and answer any questions they might have.

    For those that don't know, getting on to the NEA scheme is done in 3 steps...

    Step 1 - A meeting with your personal advisor in the Job Centre to discuss the possibility of going on the NEA scheme. If your personal advisor supports your idea (mine is an online design agency - web design, SEO, branding etc) they will then book an appointment with a business expert.

    Step 2 - Discuss the idea with the business expert who has the final decision on whether the business idea is viable or not. (This is the meeting I have tomorrow).

    Step 3 - If the idea is seen to be viable, you will be paired up with a business mentor who will continue to develop the idea further. This process is said to take 6-8 weeks.


    I have the following questions to ask tomorrow, feel free to add anything you think I should ask...

    1) I am living with partner, we both receive £105 per week as we are both unemployed. How will the NEA scheme effect this payment?

    2) My partner an I also receive housing benefit and council tax benefit. How will the NEA scheme effect this payment?

    3) What are the exact conditions of the £1000 loan? APR, length of loan agreement, etc.

    4) Should the business fail, what is the process of going back on to JSA until I find employment?

    If anyone else is on the NEA scheme, feel free to share your thoughts
    Last edited by XEO25; 09-08-2011 at 2:46 PM.
Page 70
    • Electrum
    • By Electrum 14th Dec 15, 2:57 PM
    • 168 Posts
    • 55 Thanks
    Electrum
    A few questions about NEA please?

    1. Do you get WTC based on your last years income, plus the NEallowance 65 per week for 13 weeks, followed by £33 per week for the following 13 weeks?

    2. The following year when working out your income, does the NEAllowance count as income just as income from the business?

    3. How long are you given if you cant make the business work, can you keep living off WTC trying to make the business work for 1 year or 2 years if there is still no profit?

    4. If you do stop trading and go back on JSA after say 13 weeks or something, is it classed as a new claim? Will it take another year before they start pressuring you to do a work placement?
    Last edited by Electrum; 14-12-2015 at 3:01 PM.
    • Jinks
    • By Jinks 15th Dec 15, 3:19 PM
    • 100 Posts
    • 27 Thanks
    Jinks
    Hi guys,

    I'm also newly on NEA, though unfortunately my JCP advisor has never used the scheme before and is a bit clueless about the process! Fortunately I don't need the loan as I have no startup costs, but would anyone happen to know how long it should take for NEA payments to start? After my business plan was approved, I signed off JSA and signed the NEA paperwork, but that was three weeks ago and I haven't received a payment yet (unfortunately my JCP advisor is currently on a course so I can't get hold of her). The delay has meant I've had to borrow money from a relative for groceries, which is not a promising start to my new self-employment venture!
    • AG47
    • By AG47 16th Dec 15, 8:05 AM
    • 395 Posts
    • 122 Thanks
    AG47
    A few questions about NEA please?

    1. Do you get WTC based on your last years income, plus the NEallowance 65 per week for 13 weeks, followed by £33 per week for the following 13 weeks?

    2. The following year when working out your income, does the NEAllowance count as income just as income from the business?

    3. How long are you given if you cant make the business work, can you keep living off WTC trying to make the business work for 1 year or 2 years if there is still no profit?

    4. If you do stop trading and go back on JSA after say 13 weeks or something, is it classed as a new claim? Will it take another year before they start pressuring you to do a work placement?
    Originally posted by Electrum
    1. Yes

    2. Yes

    3. 1year

    4. Yes as long as you signed off for 10 months at least
    • TrueBlue1965
    • By TrueBlue1965 18th Dec 15, 1:33 PM
    • 95 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    TrueBlue1965
    NEA payments dont effect Working Tax credits or any other benefits.

    NEA payments dont count towards income when completing your end of year tax records!

    NEA payments have nothing to do with Tax, Working Tax Credits or any other benefits! Think of the NEA payments as free money or money you already had in your bank account!

    Yes, you can get Working Tax credits for as long as you are trading. This includes businesses not making a profit in years 2. 3, or more. The only stipulation is that your working the minimum number of hours and potentially can show that your working the minimum number of hours if asked to show evidence. Very few people/businesses will ever be askd to show eveidence!

    JCP records stay with you for up to 2 years. So, yes, you could be placed on The Work Programme very quickly if you return to cliaming JSA after going on NEA for a short time. Everybody can expect to be placed on The Work programme or similar out of work support after being unemployed for 12 months. So, once you start claiming JSA, the clock is ticking and continues to tick even if you sign off for a period of time. The aim of JCP and The Work Programme is to get you back into full-time long term work.

    Jinks, you should get your 1st NEA payment within two weeks as it is supposed to be seemless between JSA and the NEA payments. If your payments have not started by Monday. Get a JCP manager to get it sorted out. Someone in the back office at your JCP should be dealing with NEA payments. It just needs a Manager to push the payment through. Your doing your bit by starting a new business rather than signing on. The least they can do is get your NEA payments paid to you on time. Your a professional businessman now. Expect them to be professional too. Dont take no for a answer!
    Last edited by TrueBlue1965; 18-12-2015 at 3:53 PM.
    • AG47
    • By AG47 19th Dec 15, 11:53 AM
    • 395 Posts
    • 122 Thanks
    AG47
    NEA payments dont effect Working Tax credits or any other benefits.

    NEA payments dont count towards income when completing your end of year tax records!

    NEA payments have nothing to do with Tax, Working Tax Credits or any other benefits! Think of the NEA payments as free money or money you already had in your bank account!

    Yes, you can get Working Tax credits for as long as you are trading. This includes businesses not making a profit in years 2. 3, or more. The only stipulation is that your working the minimum number of hours and potentially can show that your working the minimum number of hours if asked to show evidence. Very few people/businesses will ever be askd to show eveidence!

    JCP records stay with you for up to 2 years. So, yes, you could be placed on The Work Programme very quickly if you return to cliaming JSA after going on NEA for a short time. Everybody can expect to be placed on The Work programme or similar out of work support after being unemployed for 12 months. So, once you start claiming JSA, the clock is ticking and continues to tick even if you sign off for a period of time. The aim of JCP and The Work Programme is to get you back into full-time long term work.

    Jinks, you should get your 1st NEA payment within two weeks as it is supposed to be seemless between JSA and the NEA payments. If your payments have not started by Monday. Get a JCP manager to get it sorted out. Someone in the back office at your JCP should be dealing with NEA payments. It just needs a Manager to push the payment through. Your doing your bit by starting a new business rather than signing on. The least they can do is get your NEA payments paid to you on time. Your a professional businessman now. Expect them to be professional too. Dont take no for a answer!
    Originally posted by TrueBlue1965
    What if you stay self employed for two or three years then if the business still doesn't make a profit even though your putting the hours in, and you go back on Jsa, then you would have another 12 months before the work program wouldn't you?

    Where is the cut off point then if it's longer than three years or something?

    I understand if you went back on Jsa quite soon, then they may say you should go on work program, but if it's been a few years self employed then it's a whole new Jsa claim right?
    • TrueBlue1965
    • By TrueBlue1965 20th Dec 15, 9:38 PM
    • 95 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    TrueBlue1965
    Thats correct, AG47. It would be a new claim if you had been signed off JSA for several years. Universal Credit might change this once your in that system.
    • scmp
    • By scmp 18th Feb 16, 4:07 PM
    • 179 Posts
    • 195 Thanks
    scmp
    Wow this thread is so full of information!
    Thank you everybody who has contributed so far, a lot of my questions have been answered!

    My JC person called up the NEA today to refer me to the scheme. They will call me tomorrow between 9am and 5pm for a chat and arrange a place and time to meet a mentor and group.

    Does anybody know what they will ask me tomorrow or is it just to put me with a mentor?

    When i go to see the mentor for the first time what do i have to bring with me?

    I have an 'idea'
    I have made some templates of what i want to sell.
    I have worked out my costs of material, time (my ph rate), expenses, NI, selling price and profit for each item.
    I have approached shops to gauge if they are interested.
    I have a list of market and fair dates that i want to sell at.
    I have 3 websites to sign up to that i can sell from.

    Is this enough for the mentor to accept me onto the course and make a busines plan?
    • HOW
    • By HOW 26th Feb 16, 3:13 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    HOW
    Are mentors voluntary?
    I have read on this site that mentors are voluntary,and so it would seemingly be in their interests to tell you what you need to know without further fuss.
    But from my experience up to date it seems I am being sent from one meeting to another without really getting anywhere or being told exactly how this things works,after 10 weeks of waiting and getting palmed off by job center ie.We are full for next 3 weeks,then,so& so is off ill. I finally got to to see someone who seemed really helpfull,but at second meeting(all of which cost quite a bit in fares) appeared not to have listened to a word I was saying,and then made another appointment in 2 days time for a "workshop" miles away at peak time,and seemed to be telling me that I would have to go to another 8 weeks of meetings for no apparent reason,by the time this goes through I will have been waitng nearly 5 months--any savings I had have been badly eaten in to just waiting the initial 10 weeks--by the time this is sorted out I will have no transport,or savings left--totally disheartening.
    It seems I have learnt more reading information on the internet than I have in a total of 4 meetings with people who are supposed to know what this is about!-really has a "jobs for the boys" feel about it.
    • jennytablina
    • By jennytablina 1st Jun 16, 7:42 PM
    • 15 Posts
    • 30 Thanks
    jennytablina
    Posting here because I'm a bit lost

    I've done the NEA process up to submitting my business plan & had it signed off from the workshop (but not appoved? I dunno). I was told after this in a week or so we'd have letters confirming everything and allowing us to actually progress into NEA itself.

    At the end of the DYE BTEC workshop I found out our mentor is moving to another JS and now only visits our JS once a week. Heart sank as I know what happens when your caught in this situation (it's happened before as a student)

    Naturally here I am a month later waiting for approval and feeling really irritated and antsy. I just want to get started. But I don't want to be in trouble because the JS (or outside company dealing with NEA) can't get act together.
    • M202A1
    • By M202A1 4th Jul 16, 7:16 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    M202A1
    Has anyone received the....

    "Dear ****

    Congratulations!

    Your NEA Start Up Loan has been approved in principle."

    Does this mean you have been 100% approved to receive the loan?
    Did you get rejected after this?
    How long after did you get the loan papers that you are to sign?


    Cheers
    • Jinks
    • By Jinks 4th Sep 16, 3:08 PM
    • 100 Posts
    • 27 Thanks
    Jinks
    Hi guys,

    I just wanted to say that I'm happy to answer any questions anyone has about NEA since I used the scheme with reasonable success (my self-employment is ongoing after finishing the NEA scheme, though I'm definitely living on a strict budget while I continue to work on it!). Unfortunately I don't know anything about the loan available, since I didn't take that out.

    In general principle, I'd recommend the scheme, as I had some (intermittent!) advice from advisors and was able to use it to come off JSA and earn a living successfully. BUT it's really only suitable for certain kinds of businesses and you need to be very self-motivated to learn and figure out any issues for yourself. I'm currently studying a business course part time alongside working to help me grow my self-employment venture, as I didn't get as much support from business mentors as I was hoping.

    The acceptance process can be pretty slow, but it's worth pursuing.
    • Miss anxious
    • By Miss anxious 27th Sep 16, 7:35 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Miss anxious
    Hi I read your posts and very helpful. I am waiting to hear if I have been excepted on to the NEA loan. I am extremely anxious as I have one ccj which has been there Eyre. I was executor of my father's will and his solicitor would not wait for payment, even although the estate was not sold. I had moved house and this is where the judgement came in. It will be removed soon but I am concerned this will go against me.

    Can you advise?

    Thx
    • Wynn
    • By Wynn 1st Oct 16, 2:56 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Wynn
    NEAS and Housing Benefit........
    I've just gone onto NEAS and while there are some good things about it there are others that aren't.

    The Housing Benefit one is the latter. When I signed off and went onto NEAS I was given a letter by the JCP telling me about the transition. This was then sent to the HB/CTA Office to let them know about the change of Circumstances. I did this on the first working day of my NEAS which was sent electronically so they'd have a Record of when this happened.

    After about a Week I get a letter from them asking for Bank Statements and to complete a Form about Self-Employment. Hmm, I've been on this for a Week and they want Bank Statements showing Money made with my Business and a Form telling them how much and what my Profit Margin will be. But how is anything going to show this after only a few days, while there is only one NEAS payment in that Account with "DWP" next to it? I kept these for long enough to show my NEAS Payments etc then finally sent them (long before the Deadline).

    I then get a letter telling me my Housing Benefit and CTA has been stopped because they haven't received the requested Info, except they had - or at least I'd sent it via their internal Fax, but apparently they'd only got the Cover Note from the initial Correspondence. I saw their Officer on Thursday 29th Sept, showed them the Receipt, who then sent them again and that was supposed to be the end of it.

    Not sure if the letter I got today (Dated 29th September) was sent before they knew this but it says my HB has been cancelled. I now have to find out what has gone wrong with this - which I can't do until Monday 3rd October.

    What this implies is that the JCP's and the Housing Benefit/Council Tax Allowance Office don't have an Agreement to transfer former JSA/ESA Claimants onto NEAS, while it's unrealistic to expect them to provide Information about their Earnings after only a Week. Considering any Business doesn't make Money for about 2 years this is a bit harsh. They should establish that all NEAS Claimants make that transition like they would on any other Allowance that entitles them to HB/CTA. They should do this for the 6 Months they are on the Scheme, with a review at the end of it.
    • jackrussell28
    • By jackrussell28 18th Oct 16, 8:10 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    jackrussell28
    What if I go sick whilst on NEA
    I have asked NEA advisor if I could defer starting the scheme, my business plan was approved with final changeover date. The reason to defer is because in the interim period I have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome which will prevent me from working, and will probably need an operation.
    Was told through the NEA advisor that their Job Centre Plus advisor said that I could not defer and if I miss the start date will be taken off the scheme.
    Can re-apply again next year but with a different business idea.

    Find the whole response from NEA and JCP unhelpfull and cannot understand the unflexibility of the scheme.

    Thinking now tghat I should just sign over to NEA and then tell the Job Centre that I am unable to work if the doctor gives me a sick note and take it from that.

    Any previous experience anybody has of my circumstances would be gratefully received.
    • SoftKittyWarmKitty
    • By SoftKittyWarmKitty 22nd Nov 16, 10:57 PM
    • 334 Posts
    • 618 Thanks
    SoftKittyWarmKitty
    Hi everyone,
    I started signing on last month after my work contract wasn't renewed. After some googling about going from JSA to self employment, I stumbled across the NEAS. I queried it with my work coach, who today said I can apply for it. I have a meeting next week at a different job centre in town, which I understand is with someone who will decide whether my business idea has legs. For this meeting I've been informed that I just need to go with information about my business idea, where I'll trade from (home, office, shop etc), whether I'll need to hire staff, how and where I'll advertise etc. My work coach said I don't need to take a business plan with me. Is that correct? Is there anything else I should take? Also, those of you who've had these meetings, what happened at the first one and what kind of things were you asked about?

    Also, has anyone ever had an idea rejected? My business idea is online-based and relatively unusual, at least in the UK, so I'm a bit concerned this person I'm meeting won't see the value of it as a potential business. It's a growth industry though and I can provide figures to support this. I've actually started to put together content already (some copy, and the bare bones of a website) because I was aiming to sign off at some point and set up this business anyway. Would it be worth taking proof of this activity with me, or would they class that as working when I'm signing on? I've still been looking and applying for jobs while doing the business bits in the evenings.

    I just want to give myself the best chance of being accepted as I hate being unemployed.
    • jackrussell28
    • By jackrussell28 23rd Nov 16, 8:52 AM
    • 10 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    jackrussell28
    first NEA meeting
    HI Kitty

    Your first meeting when 'reffered' by your work coach will be with someone who will decide if it's a viable business you are thinking of starting.

    They do not require a business plan at this stage just ideas how you will sell products or a service.

    The fact that you have proof that your idea is a growth industry should convince them to forward the plan to the next stage, so long as you are not trading or earning any money whilst you are putting content together is showing how passionate you are about making the business plan work.

    Relax and just prepare youself for the meeting, I actually did mine over the phone and it lasted no longer than 10 minutes, and I was later told that they are under pressure to get people onto NEA .

    Good luck but it sounds to me that luck will not come into it as you seem to have a great idea.

    JACK
    • SoftKittyWarmKitty
    • By SoftKittyWarmKitty 28th Nov 16, 7:30 PM
    • 334 Posts
    • 618 Thanks
    SoftKittyWarmKitty
    HI Kitty

    Your first meeting when 'reffered' by your work coach will be with someone who will decide if it's a viable business you are thinking of starting.

    They do not require a business plan at this stage just ideas how you will sell products or a service.

    The fact that you have proof that your idea is a growth industry should convince them to forward the plan to the next stage, so long as you are not trading or earning any money whilst you are putting content together is showing how passionate you are about making the business plan work.

    Relax and just prepare youself for the meeting, I actually did mine over the phone and it lasted no longer than 10 minutes, and I was later told that they are under pressure to get people onto NEA .

    Good luck but it sounds to me that luck will not come into it as you seem to have a great idea.

    JACK
    Originally posted by jackrussell28
    Thanks Jack,
    I had the meeting today and it went really well. So well that I'm on the NEA scheme! Yay! He seemed to really love my idea, thankfully. I've got a 3-hour workshop later this week with a few other people who are also new recruits to the scheme, so I'll find out more then, but in the first instance I have 8 weeks to submit my business plan and get approval on it.

    It's my signing on day tomorrow so I'll tell my work coach that I've been accepted. The man I saw today said that some work coaches make people still look and apply for work while their in the planning stage of NEAS, as you still have to sign on, but some don't. I'm hoping mine says I don't have to, as I really want to put all my time and effort into getting my business going now.

    Onwards and upwards!
    • jackrussell28
    • By jackrussell28 28th Nov 16, 8:17 PM
    • 10 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    jackrussell28
    Nea 'looking for work'
    Pleased to hear everything gone well, your Job centre advisor cannot expect you to look for full-time work whilst you are preparing your business plan over the next 8 weeks, you need to spend your time preparing for that.
    Tell you advisor that you are still looking but for part-time work which may supplement your income once you begin your own business venture, that usually pacifies them, and keep logging in to the Universal Jobsite.
    Remember once you have your plan passed , if that is 8 weeks from now , you have another 12 weeks before you have to sign over to NEA and start trading, all this time you keep receiving JSA

    jack
    • SoftKittyWarmKitty
    • By SoftKittyWarmKitty 29th Nov 16, 10:20 AM
    • 334 Posts
    • 618 Thanks
    SoftKittyWarmKitty
    Thanks Jack,
    I've been to sign on this morning and my work coach says that as soon as she receives official notification that I'm now on NEAS she'll change my client commitment so it states that I no longer have to look for work and instead should dedicate my time to my business plan and getting my business up and running. As I only had the meeting yesterday, she hasn't received notification yet but should have by the time I see her next week. In the meantime I have an NEAS workshop tomorrow, so I should find out much more then. I'm a bit concerned about my housing benefit and tax credits - I only went onto JSA at the end of Oct so they're still not fully sorted out yet and I'm not sure what will happen to those going forward. I'll ask tomorrow.

    How long have you been on NEAS Jack? How are you finding it? Hope it was a success for you!
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