Universal Credit (UC) is a means-tested benefit for people of a working age who are on a low income. Universal Credit replaced Housing Benefit, Income-based job seekers allowance, Income-based employment & support allowance, Income support, Child tax credits and Working tax credits.
Universal Credit will be paid to you in a single monthly payment, broken down into two separate elements:
If your circumstances have changed and you need to make a new benefit claim it is likely that you will need to claim Universal Credit. Likewise, if you have a significant change in circumstances that will affect your current benefit entitlement you may be advised to claim it.
If you're unsure of anything or would like more information, our Welfare Team is here to help. You can also visit www.gov.uk/universalcredit
The only way you will be able to make a claim for Universal Credit is online, as well as managing your claim through an online journal.
Before making a claim you will need the following so that you can receive your UC payments as soon as possible:
Your claim can take up to 5 weeks after providing all the supporting evidence needed. During this time you can apply for an 'Advanced Payment' which will be equal to your monthly payment (you can pay this back over 12 months). Find out how to apply for an 'Advanced Payment' here.
You may also be entitled to a 2 week ‘run on’ of Housing Benefit payments to help reduce any rent arrears on your account – maximum Housing Benefit will be paid minus any deductions for spare bedrooms and non-dependants.
If you are moving between Local Authorities this ‘run on’ will be paid by your old Local Authority, it is important that you contact them to request the ‘run on’ which may be paid directly to yourself.