Benefits advice - Incapable of work

Most people who cannot work due to illness or disability get Statutory Sick Pay or Employment and Support Allowance.

In order to qualify for these benefits you must first establish that you are ‘incapable of work’. This requires medical certificates from a doctor.

Statutory Sick Pay

If you work and are sick for four or more days in a row, you may qualify for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) from your employer

Find out more about Statutory Sick Pay

New Style Employment and Support Allowance

If you are unable to work due to illness or you have a health condition or disability that limits your ability to work you may be able to claim New Style Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), depending on your National Insurance record.

New style ESA can be claimed on its own or at the same time as Universal Credit.

You can apply for New Style ESA online. If you can’t make an application online, you can apply by calling the Universal Credit helpline

What other benefits can I get?

As well as Statutory Sick Pay or Employment and Support Allowance, there may be other benefits that can help you.

If you are working age and you do not live in supported accommodation you may be able to apply for Universal Credit.

The Council Tax Reduction Scheme could help you to pay your council tax costs if you are on a low income.

Please note: The benefit cap may limit the total amount of weekly benefits that can be paid to you. If the cap applies to you, your Housing Benefit will be reduced to ensure that the total level of benefit you receive is not more than the cap level. The cap applies to people of working age only.

Find out more about the Benefit Cap

Contact us

For further advice, you can contact our Welfare Rights and Money Advice team.