New Enterprise Allowance 

New Enterprise Allowance is a scheme managed by Jobcentre Plus, which could provide you with support and funding to start your own business.


How the new Enterprise allowance scheme works

If you have a business idea and you’re receiving certain benefits, you could get support and funding from the New Enterprise Allowance scheme to help launch your business.

Support and advice

A specialist from Jobcentre Plus will assess your business idea and see if it has potential. If your idea is accepted, you’ll be signed up to the scheme and get a business mentor who’ll help you write a business plan and develop your idea.

Financial support

You’ll be able to claim financial support if your business plan is approved and you start working at your business for 16 hours or more per week.


If your business plan is approved, you could:

  • Receive a weekly allowance, paid for up to 26 weeks (up to a total of £1,274)
  • Apply for a loan to help with start-up costs.

Any money you get doesn’t affect your housing benefit, tax credits, income tax or Access to Work grant.

Am I eligible?

You need to be receiving one of the following benefits in order to apply:

  • Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income Support as a lone parent
  • Employment and Support Allowance, if you’re in the work-related activity group.

You won’t qualify if you’re part of the Work Programme, but there's lots of other support for setting up a business available elsewhere on the website.

How to apply

You can find information on the Department for Work and Pensions website by clicking here

When you're ready to apply, contact your local Jobcentre Plus where your advisor will guide you through the process. Find your local Jobcentre here. 

Alternatively, you can contact our business growth team here at the LEP on 0113 3481818 or to find out more. 

Local authority support

Specific help and support for new start-up businesses is also available from your own local authority and their partners. Contact the business growth team at for more information. 

Business support and finance

Not sure where to start? Don't worry. Just get in touch with our business growth team and we can help you find the right support for your business needs.