Picture stating Benefits are changing big time

Benefits are changing big time for working age people. The Government has created Universal Credit as a new type of benefit designed to support people who are on a low income or out of work. It will replace six existing benefits and is currently being rolled out across the UK. 

What is it?

It brings together the main out of work benefits:

  • Housing Benefit
  • Income Support
  • Job Seekers Allowance
  • Income Related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit.

When is it coming?

  • February 2016 - Universal Credit arrived in Wolverhampton for single people claiming for the first time.
  • July 2017 - Universal Credit will be extended to all new claimants in the WV14 9 postcode area.
  • December 2017 - it will be extended to couples and families making new claims for the first time.
  • September 2018 - existing claimants will be invited to transition to Universal Credit.
  • 2022 - all claimants should be on Universal Credit 

What do I need to do?

If you claim any of the benefits in the list, you'll be contacted after September 2018 to transfer over to Universal Credit. It seems a long way off, but you'll need to be ready:

  • Email address: Make sure you've got an up to date email address as claims will be online.
  • Bank Account: Make sure you've got a bank or credit union account as your Universal Credit will be paid direct to you into an account.
  • Start saving: Your Universal Credit will be paid monthly in arrears but you'll still need to pay your rent in advance. (Rent won't be paid direct to us, you'll need to pay it yourself.) Why not open a credit union account and save a little each week or month so that you'll have your first rent payment ready? (You'll get interest on your savings too.)

How can I get more information?

For more help and advice on Universal Credit, visit www.ucwolves.com

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