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Universal Credit claimants

About Universal Credit

You may be able to claim Universal Credit instead of certain benefits if you’re on a low income or out of work.

See the Universal Credit pages on GOV.UK for more information.

Universal Credit frequently asked questions

Below you will find answers to frequently asked questions regarding Universal Support.

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What is Universal Credit?

Universal Credit is a new benefit that was introduced in Lincolnshire in November 2015. It replaced these six working-age benefits:

  • Job Seekers Allowance (JSA)
  • Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Income Support
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Housing Benefit

To find out more information visit the Universal Credit pages on GOV.UK.

Will Universal Credit affect me?

If you are of working age and on one of the six benefits below, then yes.

  • Job Seekers Allowance (JSA)
  • Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Income Support
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Housing Benefit

What main differences will I notice when I change to Universal Credit?

The main differences are:

  • Your benefits will be paid in a single monthly payment and will include your payment for rent.
  • You will need to have a bank account that can make Direct Debit payments.
  • You will make your claim via computer instead of in person or by telephone

How will I be paid?

Under Universal Credit you will be once a month in arrears. This payment will also include money for your rent, even if your landlord is a Housing Association or the Council.

If you feel like you would struggle with monthly payments, the Money Advice Service have a budget planner that contains useful tips and a budgeting support tool.
    
If you need to set up a bank account the Money Advice Service provides a guide on choosing a bank account for your benefit payments.

What if I start working?

You will need to tell Department of Work and Pensions if you start working. You should call the Universal Credit helpline 0345 600 0723 to report this change. The helpline is available Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm.
   
Under Universal Credit you will be better off in work. Even working just a few hours a week will make a difference.
    
When you start work you may also need to review your Claimant Commitment with your work coach, to make sure that it reflects the changes in your situation. You will need to agree any changes to your Claimant Commitment. Depending on your circumstances, you could still get support and advice on increasing your earnings when you’re in work

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Housing and home choices

Information and advice about our housing services is available on our housing and homelessness pages.

Help with money

Are you worried about debt? Debt and money problems are a common concern for many people from all walks of life. Our help with money page has some details of organisation who can offer help and advice.