Over the past few days, you will have seen lots of headlines and news stories focused around Universal Credit.
By the end of 2017, the new Universal Credit full digital service will be in place in both the Winsford and Northwich Job Centre Plus areas.
It has already been introduced to those living in the Chester & Runcorn Job Centre areas
The move over to Universal Credit can seem daunting, but our Income Team are here if you need help, advice or support with these changes.
Here are the top 5 things you need to know about Universal Credit
1. It’s replacing these six benefits:
- Housing Benefit
- Income Support
- Income-Based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income-Related Employment and Support Allowance
- Child Tax Credit
- Working Tax Credit
Universal Credit is a single, monthly payment that replaces the above benefits.
2. You will have to apply online
Your claim is managed online – meaning you will need to access your account regularly and complete your ‘to do’ lists.
Here are the key points to remember:
- You will have to register for an account and add your claim
- If you have a partner, your will need to mention them as part of your claim. You will then receive a separate code.
- Your partner will have to create their own account and use the same code. This allows Universal Credit to ‘match’ your claims.
- You will also need an email account
If you haven’t got access to the internet at home, you can access it for free at your local library or Job Centre Plus.
3. You will need a bank account
Universal Credit is paid monthly into your bank account. You can take the stress out of paying your rent by setting up a monthly Direct Debit payment with us. If you’re unsure about how to do this, get in touch with our income team, they’re more than happy to help.
4. You will need to start paying your rent directly to us
If you currently claim housing benefit, your rent is likely to be paid directly to us. This won’t be the case under Universal Credit as you’ll have to start paying your rent directly to us. Paying your rent should always be a top priority, so please get in touch if you are struggling with your finances, we can help.
5. Universal Credit can be paid up to 6 weeks AFTER you make a claim
How will you manage? Getting a single monthly payment might be making you even more nervous about keeping your head above water. Setting up a monthly budget including your monthly incomings and outgoings is essential; once again, we can help.
If you are worried about claiming Universal Credit, don’t bury your head in the sand, we are here to help. Get in touch:
Call: 01606 813594
Facebook – www.fb.com/weavervale
Twitter - @weavervale