What is Universal Credit?
Universal Credit is a new single benefit payment for people who are either looking for work or on a low income. The new benefit will bring together a range of benefits into a single payment.
Universal Credit will eventually replace:
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Child Tax Credits
- Working Tax Credits
- Housing Benefit
You will need to apply online for Universal Credit – it is recommended that if you are of working age, receive state benefits and are worried about applying online, that you consider developing your online skills in preparation for the introduction of the new benefit
When will Universal Credit be introduced?
Universal Credit started to be introduced in certain areas of the UK in stages from April 2013. The Department of Work and Pensions plan to make Universal Credit available in each part of the UK during 2016. New claims to existing benefits, which Universal Credit is replacing, will then close down, with the vast majority of claimants moving onto Universal Credit during 2016 and 2017
Who will the switch to Universal Credit affect?
Everyone receiving the benefits listed above.
Payments will be made directly to you
If you are receiving some of the above benefits and are renting a property from Paradigm, under Universal Credit your Housing Benefit will no longer be paid directly to us. The housing element of your Universal Credit will be paid directly to you instead.
Under Universal Credit you will need to:
- make arrangements to pay Paradigm your rent regularly yourself –
(this is easiest when paying by direct debit)
- have a bank account to receive your benefits, which will be paid to you in one monthly lump sum
- set up a bank account if you don’t already have one.
- For more information from GOV.UK click here.
- For more information on the Universal Credit contact your local Job Centre Plus. Find your nearest Jobcentre Plus
- You can check what benefits you are entitled to through this benefits adviser
- More information about benefits is available from My Advice Gateway
- For support and guidance around budgeting, contact or visit your local Citizens Advice Bureau
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