Confused? We’re here to help

Universal Credit (UC) is a major government change which was initially introduced across Wakefield in April 2016. The UC Full Service will be rolled out across the district from 28th November 2018.

If you are on a low income and claiming benefits then UC is going to change the way you receive your money.

With UC you will need to budget your money on a monthly basis – and Cash Wise is here to help.

Top Tips

  1. Try out the Cash Wise budget calculator
  2. You need a mobile phone, email address and bank account to apply
  3. Support is available

Universal Credit replaces six working age benefits with a single monthly payment similar to a monthly working wage. The six benefits replaced are:

  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Income Support (IS)
  • Child Tax Credits (CTC)
  • Working Tax Credits (WTC)
  • Housing Benefit (HB)

People of pension age will not be affected. If you are unsure of when you will reach Pension Credit age, the GOV.UK website provides a useful state pension calculator.

UC is paid directly to one member of the household into a bank, building society or credit union account once per month

Factsheet

Download our factsheet here.

What are the key features of Universal Credit?

  • Universal Credit payments will reduce gradually as earnings increase so people won’t lose all their benefits at once.
  • If you are entitled to the housing costs element of UC you will receive this as part of your monthly payment. This is different to Housing Benefit as it is your responsibility to pay your rent to WDH each month under UC.
  • If you are required to make a claim for UC, then the first stage is to make an online claim. As part of this process you will have to verify your identity on Gov.UK Verify. You will need to manage your claim through the customer journal.
  • When you make a claim, you will be asked to input your personal details including your National Insurance Number. You will also need to inform the DWP who your landlord is and provide information about your tenancy.
  • UC is digital by design and so no paper forms will be available. You will require a bank account, mobile phone and email address to apply. Support will be available for those who are unable to use or access the internet.
  • The second stage is to go to a face-to-face interview at a Jobcentre Plus office with a Work Coach.

For more information on Universal Credit visit: www.gov.uk/universal-credit