Over 11,000 UK households are claiming more than £34,000 a year, which is the equivalent of higher rate taxpayer’s earnings of £47,000.
This excessive figure was revealed by Iain Duncan, Work and Pensions secretary who revealed that letters are going to be sent to over 67,000 UK households this week explaining the details about a new benefits cap that is coming into place limiting their benefits.
The benefits cap which comes into effect in April 2013 will mean that nobody on benefits can claim more than £26,000 per year which is the average annual salary. The aim is to remove the disincentive to work shown by a lot of people can be far better off by not working.
The 11,000 households identified as living the life of luxury without having to work for it, enjoying benefits of over £34,000 a year, which is equal to a gross wage of £47,000. Mr Duncan Smith will be writing to these as part of the 67,000 people this week with the news that their benefits are to be capped.
Mr Duncan Smith said: “For more than ten years Labour let the benefits bill soar, and these figures show the scale of the problem.”
“It is absurd that people are able to claim as much on benefits as a higher rate taxpayer earns.”
“The welfare state should work as a safety net and then support people to financial independence”
“Our welfare reforms will make sure a life in work always pays more than a life on benefits, and are a clear illustration that this Government is on the side of people who work hard, do the right thing and aspire to a better life.”
David Cameron has also said that it is “time to call time” on these excessive benefits. In January he said: “It’s a basic issue of fairness. Should people really be able to earn more than £26,000 just through benefits alone? I don’t believe they should. And I think the overwhelming majority of people in the country would back that view.”