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The Universal Credit Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2016

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82.—(1) The benefit cap does not apply to an award of universal credit in relation to an assessment period where—

(a)the claimant’s earned income, or if the claimant is a member of a couple, the couple’s combined earned income, is equal to or exceeds £430; or

(b)the assessment period falls within a grace period or is an assessment period in which a grace period begins or ends.

(2) A grace period is a period of 9 consecutive months that begins on the most recent of the following days in respect of which the condition in paragraph (3) is met—

(a)a day falling within the current period of entitlement to universal credit which is the first day of an assessment period in which the claimant’s earned income (or, if the claimant is a member of a couple, the couple’s combined earned income) is less than the amount mentioned in paragraph (1)(a);

(b)a day falling before the current period of entitlement to universal credit which is the day after a day on which the claimant has ceased paid work.

(3) The condition is that, in each of the 12 months immediately preceding that day, the claimant’s earned income or, if the claimant was a member of a couple, the couple’s combined earned income was equal to or exceeded the amount mentioned in paragraph (1)(a).

(4) “Earned income” for the purposes of this regulation does not include income a person is treated as having by virtue of regulation 63 (minimum income floor).

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