Relaxation of jobseeking rules for homeless claimants
Published: Thur, 10 Jul 2014
New regulations come into force on 21st July 2014 which will ease the conditions on homeless jobseekers who are looking for work.
The Jobseeker’s Allowance (Homeless Claimants) (Amendment) Regulations (NI) 2014 will allow jobseekers who have recently become homeless to be treated as available for employment while they are trying to find a new home. Homeless jobseekers will have to show that they are taking reasonable steps to find a new home to be eligible.
This change will provide extra support for people who are homeless and looking for work by giving them a period of time to sort out their housing situation before actively looking for a job.
Under the regulations, Jobcentre Plus staff (work coaches) can decide whether the claimant’s homelessness is a ‘domestic emergency’; if it is, then they will not be expected to look for work until they have found a home. It is not expected to cover more than four weeks in any 12 month period, but this will be decided on the circumstances of each individual case.
This will mean that during the domestic emergency a homeless claimant will not have to be:
- Available for work,
- Actively seeking work,
- Subject to a Jobseeker’s Direction, or
- Participating in a Work Programme.