At Work in Edinburgh

Unemployment Benefits in Edinburgh

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Unemployment in Scotland Rate is around 8.1 percent, just above the UK average unemployment rate of 8 percent.

Unemployment in Edinburgh is very low at 3.6 percent. The city has the fastest rate of permanent appointment growth.


The unemployed can claim benefits through DirectGov and Job Centre Plus. Find the nearest office by JobCenter Locator.

The unemployed can apply for a Jobseeker's Allowance and other benefits. Estimates of the benefit can be calculated using the benefit calculator

There are two types of Jobseeker's Allowance:
Contribution-based: If you have paid enough National Insurance contributions (NICs) you are eligible for this form. Jobcentre Plus can pay this for up to 182 days. Generally, self-employed contributions will not help you qualify for contribution-based Jobseeker's Allowance.
The maximum weekly rate is 65.45 GBP for people aged 25 and over (16 - 24 year old's receive 51.85 GBP).
Income-based: This Jobseeker's Allowance is based on your income and savings. You may get this if you have not paid enough NICs (or you've only paid contributions for self-employment) and you're on a low income.
The maximum weekly rate for
Single people, aged under 25 - 51.85 GBP Single people, aged 25 or over - 65.45 GBP Couples and civil partnerships (both aged 18 or over) - 102.75 GBP Lone parent (aged under 18) - 51.85 GBP Lone parent (aged 18 or over) - 65.45 GBP

Who is Eligible?

  • People who are available for, capable of, and actively seeking work
  • Aged 18 or over but below State Pension age
  • Working less than 16 hours per week on average
  • In Great Britain

How to Claim a Benefit

Those claiming a Jobseeker's Allowance first need to attend an interview at the Jobcentre. An advisor meets with the applicant and discusses aid such as :

  • Access to specialist for help writing a CV, preparation for interviews, confidence building and work skills
  • Help to look for work if you haven't had experience of looking for a job for some time
  • Help with reading, maths or with your English
  • Help with one-off expenses that might help you get back to work quickly, such as the cost of buying formal clothes for an interview

To keep receiving benefits, the unemployed needs to attend regular job search reviews (about every two weeks). Reviews are extended after 13 weeks of receiving benefits. After six months receiving benefits, a "restart interview" with a personal adviser is required.

    Reviews cover:
  • What you have been doing to find work (you should keep a record)
  • Changes you might need to make to improve your chances of success
  • Any additional help you think you need

After returning to work, people will continue to receive benefits for a transition period.

Update 8/04/2011


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