What is Universal Credit?
Universal Credit (UC) is available to Gosport residents and applies to people of working age who are in or out of work.
Universal Credit (UC) is a new single monthly payment that replaces the following benefits:-
- income-based Jobseekers Allowance
- income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Working Tax Credit
- Child Tax Credit
- Income Support
- Housing Benefit
This means that anyone making a NEW claim for these benefits will have to apply for UC. You will be expected to make your UC claim online at www.gov.uk/universal-credit.
There are a small number of people who are unable to have their housing costs paid as part of their Universal Credit, so can still claim Housing Benefit. You can claim Housing Benefit if:-
- You have reached the qualifying age for Pension Credit (to check your state pension age please visit www.gov.uk/state-pension-age)
- you have been placed into temporary accommodation by our housing team; or
- you are living in supported accommodation and receive care, support or supervision from your landlord (or other organisation on your landlords' behalf)
If you have any questions about the accommodation you are in and are unsure which benefit to claim, please ask the Benefit Team for further advice before claiming.
Already receiving any of the above benefits?
If you are already receiving any of the above benefits, you don't need to do anything just yet - your benefits will continue as normal for now; you cannot claim Universal Credit at the same time as any of these other benefits.
It is important to be aware however that if you have a change in your circumstances which means you would normally have claimed a new claim for one of the above benefits, you may need to claim for Universal Credit instead.
Some examples of changes in circumstances that might result in a claim for UC are:
- A change in employment status
- A change in family circumstances
- A partner leaving or joining the household
- Starting or stopping being a carer
- Starting or stopping a claim based on disability
- Renewing or making small changes to tax credits
- Moving home and taking up a new tenancy
- Attending jury service
- Being remanded in custody
- Ceasing full time education, if you are in receipt of Income Support
- Moving from contribution-based benefits to income-based benefits
Already receiving 'old-style' Universal Credit (LIVE Service) ?
Anyone already on Universal Credit 'Live Service' will receive an invitation from Job Centre Plus to move over to the new 'FULL Service' system.
If you need help to claim UC, Citizens Advice now offer help with digital support; and if you are worried about other changes such as moving to a single monthly payment, they can also help with budgeting advice. Alternatively you can follow this link to the Council's Budgeting tool.
Want to know more about the Benefits you can get, or how starting work will affect your income; have a look at the easy-to-use Benefits Calculator.
To find out more information about Universal Credit, including if you're eligible, how to claim and how you will be paid, please visit www.gov.uk/universal-credit. You may also find the leaflets below helpful.