Evaluation of the Better-off in Work Credit
The Better-off in Work Credit (BWC) was introduced on a pilot basis, to run for a year, on 27 October 2008 in the Yorkshire and Humber Jobcentre Plus region. Under BWC, individuals leaving out-of-work benefits after a continuous period of 26 weeks or more to enter employment of 16 or more hours a week could qualify to receive a regular credit of an amount sufficient to raise their in-work income to at least GBP 25 a week above the income they receive on benefit. Entitlement lasted for 26 weeks and the credit was received either as a single lump sum at the start of the period or as a series of payments throughout the period, according to its amount. The objective of this credit was to encourage employment and to provide financial support during the transition into work. This evaluation made explicit how BWC interacted with the tax and benefit system in order to show its effect on work incentives. In addition, qualitative interviews provided detailed insight from the perspectives both of Jobcentre Plus advisors administering BWC and of those individuals potentially eligible to receive it.
Dorsett, R. Metcalf, H. and Rolfe, H. with Bewley, H., Dhudwar, A., George, A. and Hopkin, R. (2010) The Better-off in Work Credit: Incentives and experiences DWP Research Report 637
Department for Work and Pensions