Universal Credit - assumed income alert
UNIVERSAL Credit starts its "roll-out" to replace lots of other existing benefits from October, but the transition will take some time. See here for more on Universal Credit.
Of particular importance to freelances is Universal Credit's assumption that a self-employed person will earn at least £216 a week (minimum wage): many of course do not. Radio 4's The Report found one self-employed man on a low income who was already looking for alternative full-time salaried work, fearing that the Universal Credit regime would effectively mean he could no longer afford to stay self-employed.
There are other "changes" to benefits in the pipeline, including Council Tax Benefit, from April 2013, and these changes will not be good ones for freelances. There's a Benefits Entitlement Calculator to guide you towards benefits to which you may still be entitled.