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Money Moral Dilemma: Should I claim the self-employment grant even though I don't need it?

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Money Moral Dilemma: Should I claim the self-employment grant even though I don't need it?

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MSE_SarahMSE_Sarah MSE Staff
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MSE Staff
This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...

 I've been self-employed since early 2018, but I've been left unable to work since the lockdown was introduced. My partner is able to afford to cover my bills and other living expenses, so even though I'm eligible I haven't claimed a grant through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS). But I won't be able to work for a while yet, and I'm thinking about doing a post-graduate degree. So while I don't need to claim, if I did when the second grant opens in a few weeks I could put the money towards the course fees.

Unfortunately the MSE team can't always answer money moral dilemma questions as contributions are often emailed in or suggested in person. They are intended to be a point of debate and discussed at face value. 

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Replies

  • diminuadiminua Forumite
    33 posts
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    Have you considered whether you'd still be in a comfortable position if your partner got ill or lost their job? I know it's an incredibly gloomy thing to say, but when I worked at the Public Guardianship Office we quite often saw cases where there had been something happen to the one or primary breadwinner (you can have a stroke or a motorbike accident at any age, sadly) and suddenly mortgages couldn't be paid and businesses folded. Possibly it's made me oversensitive to this, but in the context of a pandemic it seems even more important not to be reliant on one person's ability to go out to work.
    You also don't say if you're married. If the absolute worst happened would you be provided for, or is everything in their name? 
    Sorry, I know these are not nice subjects but I feel they're points worth considering before you decline money you're entitled to. 
    Fashion on the Ration 37/66 
  • MiddlestitchMiddlestitch Forumite
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    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker I've been Money Tipped!
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    If you don't need it, don't claim it. The country's in enough of a mess already.
  • ryoooh123ryoooh123 Forumite
    1 posts
    First Post
    MoneySaving Newbie
    Yes of course, take it! We may be in a mess but what we need the most is spending, especially if you’re spending it on education. That’s exactly why the government is pumping billions into the economy to help people like you.
  • MalMonroeMalMonroe Forumite
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    ryoooh123 said:
    Yes of course, take it! We may be in a mess but what we need the most is spending, especially if you’re spending it on education. That’s exactly why the government is pumping billions into the economy to help people like you.
    No, the government is 'pumping billions into the economy' to help self employed people who are unable to work because of the pandemic. NOT as a security measure!! Disgusting.
  • MalMonroeMalMonroe Forumite
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    diminua said:
    Have you considered whether you'd still be in a comfortable position if your partner got ill or lost their job? I know it's an incredibly gloomy thing to say, but when I worked at the Public Guardianship Office we quite often saw cases where there had been something happen to the one or primary breadwinner (you can have a stroke or a motorbike accident at any age, sadly) and suddenly mortgages couldn't be paid and businesses folded. Possibly it's made me oversensitive to this, but in the context of a pandemic it seems even more important not to be reliant on one person's ability to go out to work.
    You also don't say if you're married. If the absolute worst happened would you be provided for, or is everything in their name? 
    Sorry, I know these are not nice subjects but I feel they're points worth considering before you decline money you're entitled to. 
    All that is totally irrelevant. The money is NOT as a security measure for 'what ifs'. It is money to replace that money which self employed people are unable to work for because of the pandemic. It's not an insurance policy for holidays, student fees, or contingencies. 
  • MalMonroeMalMonroe Forumite
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    MSE_Sarah said:
    This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...

     I've been self-employed since early 2018, but I've been left unable to work since the lockdown was introduced. My partner is able to afford to cover my bills and other living expenses, so even though I'm eligible I haven't claimed a grant through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS). But I won't be able to work for a while yet, and I'm thinking about doing a post-graduate degree. So while I don't need to claim, if I did when the second grant opens in a few weeks I could put the money towards the course fees.

    Unfortunately the MSE team can't always answer money moral dilemma questions as contributions are often emailed in or suggested in person. They are intended to be a point of debate and discussed at face value. 

    😲 If you haven’t already, join the forum to reply.
    🙄 Got a Money Moral Dilemma of your own? Suggest an MMD.
    You have answered your own question. There's no dilemma here at all. You don't need it. Other self employed people do, and they can't work because of the pandemic. If you want to study, you'll have to do like the rest of us, pay for it yourself. The grant won't go far to covering PG fees anyway.
  • SamphiremSamphirem Forumite
    4 posts
    Fifth Anniversary Combo Breaker First Post
    You are eligible to claim it, so do so. You've been noble not claiming it so far but why should your partner pay your way? Equally noble? Having read today's news, you're going to be repaying the sum in taxes, assets etc in the future and supporting, through your work, those unfortunate enough to lose their jobs. A government which pays half a restaurant bill and nicely times the £1,000 per employee brought back from furlough until January only (so they have money for Christmas? How devastatingly charitable. Why not a year of assured employment at the very least for that £1000?) is misusing my taxes and will do the same with yours once you're working again. I would disregard the comment about fraud because you are not a post grad student yet and you haven't claimed that to which you're entitled so far. As far as I'm concerned, you and your partner have already done self sacrifice for the country. 
  • Jonesy1977Jonesy1977 Forumite
    208 posts
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    You haven’t explained why you won’t be working for a while, only that this is the case.  The real question is are you genuinely self employed and do you genuinely intend to continue trading, if not then you should absolutely not claim money intended for that purpose. 
  • ali_alligatorali_alligator Forumite
    2 posts
    Second Anniversary First Post
    MoneySaving Newbie
    How does yr partner feel?
    They may say its ok, unless they are mega rich, but not very fair on them as they cd be saving that money for something else,  why should they carry you when you have the chance of your own money?
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