Universal Credit and you
Universal Credit is a new type of benefit designed to help those on a low income or out of work.
Single people of working age in Merthyr Tydfil will already be on Universal Credit.
Full roll out of Universal Credit will happen here from June 2018, this means that anyone making a new claim, this includes couples or families, will go on to Universal Credit.
Everyone will have moved over to Universal Credit by 2019/2020.
Although June seems like a little while away, the sooner you can prepare for the changes Universal Credit will bring, the better.
What is Universal Credit
Universal Credit will replace a number of current benefits and tax credits including;
– Income based job seekers
– Housing Benefit
– Income related employment and support allowance
– Income support
– Child tax credit and;
– Working Tax Credit
It will consolidate your benefits into one payment, once a month into one bank account.
More information is on the gov.uk website https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/universal-credit-and-you
How will it affect you?
If you receive any of these benefits now, it’s likely that you receive these separately at different times through the month. You will see a change to how to receive your money – it will be in one payment, once a month.
When you claim UC, it will take up to 5 weeks for the payment be made into your bank account – you need to think about how you are going to manage during this time.
At the moment you may have chosen for your Housing Benefit to be paid directly to us. With Universal Credit, you will receive the money directly and will need to arrange to pay your rent to us.
1. Get online
Universal Credit will need to be claimed and managed online so you will need to get access to the internet.
2. Get a bank account
Universal Credit will only be paid into a bank account that can received automated payments. If you don’t have a bank account you need to get one
3. Make sure you budget
It may take you some time to get used to receiving your benefits monthly, instead of weekly or fortnightly.
What can we do to help you?
Whilst we, as your landlord, may not be your obvious choice to come for help, we are here to help you. You won’t be on your own.
We can give you lots of practical help, including:
- Guidance on making your claim and managing your online journal
- Providing information on fee free bank accounts
- Providing a tenancy certificate to confirm tenancy and rent charges.
- We can help you claim for a discretionary housing payment if you are struggling financially