House of Commons Library

New Enterprise Allowance

Published Thursday, April 14, 2016

The New Enterprise Allowance is a government scheme designed to help unemployed people who want to start their own business.

Jump to full report >>

The New Enterprise Allowance (NEA) is a scheme designed to assist unemployed people who wish to start their own business. It is available to individuals aged 18 and over in Great Britain who are claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) or lone parents claiming Income Support.

Interested and eligible individuals are referred by Jobcentre Plus to a mentoring organisation, which matches them with a volunteer business mentor. The mentor assists the individual in drawing up a business plan, which is then assessed by the mentoring organisation. If the plan is approved, the individual can access financial support once they stop claiming benefit:

• a weekly allowance of £65 a week for 13 weeks and then £33 for the following 13 weeks (a total of £1,274 over 26 weeks)

• If participants need help with start-up costs, they may be able to access a loan of up to £2,500 (for participants entering the scheme from October 2013).

The NEA commenced in 2011. The scheme is open for new referrals up to March 2017.

Commons Briefing papers SN05878

Author: Aliyah Dar

Topics: Employment, Employment schemes, Small businesses, Unemployment

Share this page

Stay up to date

  • Subscribe to RSS feed Subscribe to Email alerts Commons Briefing papers

House of Commons Library

The House of Commons Library provides research, analysis and information services for MPs and their staff.