ID-100159198Universal Credit is being introduced in Somerset between February and April 2015, and is replacing:

  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Housing Benefit

Universal Credit is available to people who are on a low income or are out of work.  It will give you the support you need to prepare for work, move into work, or earn more.  In return it is your responsibility to do everything you can to find work.  Universal Credit aims to make the welfare system simpler by replacing six benefits and tax credits with a single monthly payment.

How does Universal Credit make work pay?

The rules have been changed to help make sure work pays.  Universal Credit can top up your earnings so you are better off in work than on benefits.

The amount of Universal Credit you get will gradually reduce as you earn more, but unlike Jobseeker’s Allowance your payment won’t stop when you work more than 16 hours a week.  The more you earn, the higher your total income from earnings and Universal Credit will be.  Your Universal Credit claim continues when you start work, so you don’t have to go through the hassle of making a brand new claim if that work comes to an end.  There won’t be a gap between your last payday and your next Universal Credit payment, so you can take temporary jobs without worrying what it will mean for your benefits.

Claiming Universal Credit

Universal Credit is usually claimed online, which means you can make a claim at a time that is convenient for you.  Support is available to help you get online.  Your Jobcentre can provide access to the internet or tell you about local places where you can use the internet for free.  If you cannot claim online, face to face and telephone support will be available until you can get access to the internet.

You can find out more by contacting your local Jobcentre

Find out about how your relationship with your Jobcentre will change with the introduction of Universal Credit


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