What is Universal Credit (UC)?
Universal Credit is a relatively new type of benefit designed to support people who are on a low income or out of work. It replaces six existing working age benefits and is run by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). The benefits it will replace 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)
UC is a single monthly payment made direct to you in arrears and includes help with housing costs. You have to apply as a couple if you and your partner live together, you don’t need to be married. UC does not include help towards Council Tax. You need to make a claim for Council Tax directly to the Local Authority and provide proof that you are claiming UC.
UC is applied for online. To see if you qualify visit: https://www.gov.uk/universal-credit/how-to-claim
From the 14th May 2018 Rochdale will be in a ‘Full Service’ area, claimants will be required to apply for UC on-line. Anyone who is already on UC will receive an invitation from the DWP to move over to the new system.
You will need …
- A mobile phone number
- An e-mail address
- Your own bank account/building society account or Credit Union account
You will be asked to submit (where applicable) the following documents to support your claim:-
- Photo ID to help verify their identity on-line
- Information relating to Rent Costs
- A copy of their tenancy agreement
- Wages (pay slips)
- Saving and investments
- Information on health & family details.
The really important bit...
- With Universal Credit, the Housing Costs Element (the old housing benefit) is paid directly to you and not us.
- This means that you’re responsible for paying your rent. In some cases this is a big change. Many customers have found that paying their rent by Direct Debit or Standing Order helps them budget better. Our Rent and Payment Team can help, please contact the team on 0800 277769 (free from a landline and mobile)