You may have heard about the launch of ‘Universal Credit’ which is a major change to the benefits system.
Universal Credit is a new new social security means-tested benefit, administered by the DWP, which provides a single monthly payment for people of "working age" who are either in or out of work.
Universal Credit affects single people, couples and families and has been ‘live’ in Stockport since November 2014. It is currently being rolled out across the rest of the country.
Universal Credit will, in time, completely replace:
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Child Tax Credit
- Working Tax Credit
- Housing Benefit
What’s so different about Universal Credit?
One of the key features is that it is paid monthly, in arrears, and includes "housing costs" previously covered by housing benefit. You will usually receive you first payment one month and seven days after you make your initial claim. For example, if you made a claim on 1 June 2015 your first payment is likely to be paid into your nominated bank account on 7 July, covering the period 1-30 June.
If you move onto Universal Credit you need to make sure that you:
Act Now - Contact our Money Advice Team if you are already affected or worried about these changes.
I was really struggling to make ends meet until I met with Jade. She helped me challenge my Universal Credit sanction and showed me where I could cut back on my spending until I found a new job. I feel much more positive about the future now.
One example of how we’re supporting customers through these changes.