The Help to Save scheme
The new Help to Save scheme for people on low income is expected to launch in April 2018. The scheme will allow anyone in work and in receipt of Universal Credit or Working Tax Credits to save up to £50 a month for two years and receive a 50% government bonus. Account holders will then be able to continue saving under the scheme for a further 2 years and receive another bonus. This could see those on low incomes receive a bonus of up to £1,200 over 4 years. After the 4 years have expired account balances will be rolled over into successor accounts.
The new scheme will be open to all adults in receipt of Universal Credit with minimum household earnings equivalent to 16 hours at the National Living Wage or those in receipt of Working Tax Credits. This could benefit an estimated 4 million people across the UK. There will be no limits on how the money used can be spent but it is expected that the money will be used for urgent costs. It has also been confirmed that the National Savings and Investments bank (NS&I) will be the sole provider of the accounts across the UK.
The Savings (Government Contributions) Act 2017 that allows for the introduction of the new Help to Save scheme received Royal Assent on 16 January 2017.