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Universal Credit

About Universal Credit

Universal Credit makes the welfare system simpler by replacing six benefits and credits into a single monthly payment if you are on a low income or out of work. It includes support for the costs of housing, children and childcare, as well as support for disabled people and carers.

It ensures that you will be better off in work and makes it easier for you to start a new job or work more hours. As your take home pay increases, Universal Credit will gradually reduce, meaning that your benefits don't end immediately if you are on a low income.

Universal Credit merges a number of existing benefits into one single payment:

  • Income Support
  • Income Related Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income Related Employment Support Allowance
  • Housing Benefit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit.

When will Universal Credit begin?

Universal Credit is being introduced in stages from April 2013 and will be completed by 2017. Some people in Wyre will be able to claim Universal Credit from 03 November 2014.

Who is eligible to apply?

Singles and couples with no dependant children can apply for Universal Credit if they meet all of the criteria which has been set by DWP.

If you do not meet the criteria and need to claim an existing benefit, in most cases you can do this online:

What are the main changes?

  • You will need to claim online
  • Your Universal Credit will be paid directly to one person in the household each month
  • Any help you get with your rent will be included with your Universal Credit payment and you will then pay the landlord yourself.

Support and information

If you do not have access to a computer, you can visit the Council Offices in Poulton where you can use a computer for free and receive support with making your online claim. To do this you need to make an appointment to see a Benefit Advisor, you can also telephone 01253 891000.

If you are currently claiming benefits and you want to know how Universal Credit might affect you in the future, use the Universal Credit personal planner 

If you don't have a bank account already, you might want to consider opening a basic bank account or an account with a credit union to manage your money on Universal Credit, you can contact us to arrange a free money advice session.

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