On the discussion above, self employment conditionality for Universal Credit, this is what the explanatory memorandum says:
"162. With the exception of those who are not expected to work because of their personal circumstances/..."
"The Minimum Income Floor
166. The policy intent for applying a Minimum Income Floor (MIF) is to encourage and incentivise individuals to increase their earnings through developing their self employment. It is therefore critical that the MIF is set at an appropriate level. DWP are working with other government departments to determine what the optimum design will be so that claimants become less reliant on benefits
167. The MIF is intended to reduce the claimant’s award. We will not apply the MIF where the claimant is not in the “all work-related requirements” conditionality group, since there is no expectation that such claimants are working whilst claiming Universal Credit.
168. The conditionality regime recognises the limits that some claimants who are able to work have on the amount they can be expected to work, for example if they are the lead carer for a school-age child or have a physical impairment. In setting the final design of the MIF, we will carefully consider these tailored easements.
The Start-Up Period
169. If claimants satisfy the Gateway checks on their self-employment and are within one year of starting out in self employed activity, they will be eligible for the ‘Start-Up Period’. This is one year from the date of claim within which the Minimum Income Floor will not be applied. As a result, claimants’ Universal Credit award will be calculated based on their reported income, even if that is £0 in any assessment period. Claimants will be eligible for only one Start-Up period in their working lives.
170. Claimants in a Start-Up period will not be required to satisfy work-search or availability requirements. However, they will be required to attend quarterly adviser interviews at which the Gateway checks will be repeated to ensure that the claimants continue to meet these requirements. Claimants will be subject to a sanction if they do not attend these interviews without good reason. Claimants who are found to no longer satisfy the requirements will be required to seek other work and to satisfy full work-search and availability requirements." (unless they have limited capacity for work, or severely limited capacity for work)
I'm not capable of scrutinising the actual regulations, so I'm not certain of my ground for saying this, but I believe people with disability will not have to earn the minimum wage for a 35 hour week, as we do not have the full work conditionality.
With regard to monthly accounting of cash in - cash out, this is just for how much UC you receive, not for judging your business viability in the first year (and that is only if you have full work capability) so I wonder if we've been worrying about this measure unnecessarily? If you are starting up a business, you can hardly expect the state to compensate you for your purchases of plant and stock and such. You would, though, in the months where you heavily invested, get the max. UC that you were eligible for.
Every small business and sole trader should be keeping monthly cash accounts - it's key to a viable business, whether it's a complimentary therapist or heavy plant and machinery hire. VAT is usually accounted for quarterly, but may be annually. The VAT threshold is £77,000 (turnover - or all the money in without deducting anything) and hey, that's easier than in Spain, where if you are self employed you are registered for IVA (VAT) whatever you earn, and you account for both tax and IVA and pay your bill every three months. I know these things, for my sins, and I have digressed rather.
I'm still concerned about monthly payments in arrears, because errors that mean incorrect non-payments will tip people into homelessness and abject poverty. I'm also concerned about the gap between the current system of one and two weekly payments in arrears and the first UC payment. I haven't yet found any information in the five documents on this consultation that I have open to reassure me on that.
I discover that as a single person of pensionable age, Universal Credit will not include me. Pension Credit runs on. Phew. Still going to respond though.