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Flexible Support Fund – Overview
Overview
1. The Flexible Support Fund (FSF) forms part of the overall Jobcentre Plus
(JCP) Pre-work programme offer, replacing a range of previous support which
helped claimants enter and remain in work.
2. JCP claimants are eligible for support from the fund provided they are not in
the Work Programme or Work Choice. Advisers must also ensure that all
other avenues of financial support have been fully explored and it is confirmed
that alternatives are not available before committing expenditure.
3. The fund is a key enabler to meet individual needs in order to maximise offflow into work in line with existing policy guidelines. Awards must be appropriate,
good value for tax payers’ money and ensure a claimant can move into work
sooner than would otherwise be possible. Payments from the FSF may also be
considered to enable claimants to address a skills need which will help their
immediate prospects of moving into work. This includes supporting those not
required to be available for work, or move into employment, for example those
claiming IS/ESA/IB.
4. District Managers are responsible for managing expenditure within their
budget and in this context determining how the FSF is spent locally. District
Managers may set local priorities and local guidelines/restrictions on limits for
certain types of payments and the amount advisers can award.
5. The decision to award a payment from the FSF is the responsibility of the
adviser, taking into account any local priorities, guidelines or restrictions.
Advisers must ensure they target the fund appropriately, using it for those
claimants who would not be able to move closer to or into work without such
assistance. Advisers should refer to and keep up to date with local guidelines.
6. The fund can be used to cover expenses associated with taking up work or
training in line with existing policy guidelines. It can be used to fill gaps and add
support where DWP provision, non-contracted partner provision or adviser
interventions are not sufficient or appropriate to meet local claimant needs.
7. Payments from the FSF must not be seen as a reward or bonus for moving
into work. Advisers should familiarise themselves with this guide, which explains
when FSF can and cannot be used, as well as the other chapters contained
within the FSF Guidance. A table of links to these chapters has been included at
the end of this guidance.

Eligibility
8. Support from the fund is available from day one of a new claim for all
Jobcentre Plus claimants who are not participating in the Work Programme or
Work Choice.
Note: Some payments made from the FSF retain specific eligibility, for example
In Work Emergency Payments for Lone Parents and CRB/PVG checks. Always
check relevant guidance to ensure eligibility is met before making an award or
payment.

9. Partners of claimants receiving benefit (potential second earners) are eligible
if they are over 16 and their partner is receiving a qualifying benefit. The
qualifying benefits are:
 Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
 Income Support (IS)
 Incapacity Benefit (IB)
 Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
 Carers Allowance (CA)
 Severe Disablement Allowance (SDA)
 Working Tax Credit (WTC)
 Pension Credit (PC)
10. People not claiming benefit are eligible in the following circumstances:
 Carers in receipt of Carer’s Allowance only, or not in receipt of any benefit,
are eligible if they are:
 aged 16 years or older and
 not working or working less than 16 hours per week
 Lone Parents not claiming benefit are eligible if they are responsible for
and a member of the same household, as a child or young person and
they:
 are aged over 16
 have a dependant child aged under 16
 are not working, or
 are working less than 16 hours a week, and
 are not an asylum seeker (unless they have exceptional leave to stay)
 are not required to participate in any mandatory