Last week the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) published new information in relation to the national roll out of Universal Credit.
All areas of the UK now know when the new benefit will go live in their area for new claims from single people. In Wakefield, Universal Credit will go live from 18 April 2016, meaning that we are included as the penultimate district to implement the new benefit.
Phil Wilby, WDH Business Planning Officer – Welfare Development, said:
“The announcement of the universal credit roll out date is welcome news that gives a point of focus for our preparations. The fact we are towards the end of the roll out has many benefits for the organisation and our tenants, both in terms of being able to maximise learning opportunities from other landlords and being able to work closely with the DWP and Job Centre Plus to ensure its smooth roll out across the district.”
Universal Credit is a new benefit which will replace six working age benefits with a simple, single monthly payment similar to a monthly working wage. The six benefits being replaced are:
• Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
• Income Support (IS)
• Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
• Child Tax Credits (CTC)
• Working Tax Credits (WTC)
• Housing Benefit (HB)
People of pension age will not currently be affected. Universal Credit will be paid directly to one member of the household into a bank, Building Society or credit union account once per month. Universal Credit aims to make work pay, to simplify the benefit system and to prepare people for the world of work. After new claims have been introduced for singles, couples and families across the country, existing benefit claims will be migrated over to Universal Credit, provisionally around 2018.
Further information on Universal Credit can be found on the GOV.UK website, whilst help to prepare tenants for the new benefit is available on the new Cash Wise website.