The Government has made some significant changes to the benefits system over the last few years, under the banner of 'welfare reform'. One of the most fundamental changes is the introduction of Universal Credit.
Here, you can read more about Universal Credit, what it means to you and what you need to do to prepare for it.
What is Universal Credit?
Universal Credit replaces six different benefits, combining them into one, single monthly payment. Those benefits are:
1. Housing Benefit
2. Income Support
3. Income-Based Jobseekers Allowance
4. Income-Related Employment and Support Allowance
5. Child Tax Credit
6. Working Tax Credit
Anyone in receipt of these benefits will be moved to Universal Credit eventually. Details on your entitlements, as well as when Universal Credit will reach your area, can be found via the buttons below.
One of the expectations of Universal Credit is to prepare claimants for employment, with monthly payments mirroring a salary. Apart from in exceptional circumstances, the housing element of Universal Credit will not be paid to your landlord anymore. Instead, it will come directly to you, meaning you will be responsible for paying your rent on time.
Details of what circumstances might make you exempt from receiving your housing element directly can be found below.
Making a claim
To make a claim for Universal Credit, you will need to know your current rent information and details of any service charges that may be included. Ideally you will also have a copy of your tenancy agreement, an up to date rent statement and/or a rent confirmation letter. You can request proof of rent by logging into MyMoat
, or by calling us on 0300 323 0011.
This information should be provided during your first face-to-face appointment with your assigned job coach, or uploaded to your journal (if applicable). Any delay in making your claim will result in a delay in your payments.
If you have recently made a claim for Universal Credit and find yourself struggling to manage the initial six weeks without any money, please click here to find out how to apply for a budgeting advance
To watch a video on making a claim for Universal Credit, click the button below.
How Moat can help
We have a dedicated Financial Wellbeing team that can offer advice and guidance on benefits and budgeting, benefit appeals, mandatory reconsiderations, tribunals and more. The team is also happy to help you set up a Direct Debit for your rent, or discuss other payment options.
If you’re in need of financial guidance, give the team a call on 0300 323 0011 or email UC@moat.co.uk
. If you would rather request a call back, you can use our comments form
to leave details of what you want to discuss.