Universal Credit roll out arrives in Mid Sussex

PR2170/KS/MF - 25/05/2018

At Mid Sussex District (MSDC) we are part of the latest area to join the Government’s flagship Univeral Credit scheme. This system of online application for the new Universal Credit comes into place on Wednesday 6th June.

Universal Credit (UC) is new financial assistance for people of working age on a low income, including those in work, and is administered by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). It is a single monthly payment which will eventually replace Income Support, Income Related Job Seeker's Allowance, Income Related Employment Support Allowance, Housing Benefit, Working Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit.

Anyone receiving existing benefits will see no change, but will gradually be moved over to the UC system over time. If your situation changes you will, in most circumstances, be moved over to the new Universal Credit and use that system from them on. All new claimants from 6th June 2018 will need to apply online at www.gov.uk/apply-universal-credit.

“Universal Credit aims to simplify the complex process and many different elements involved in applying for financial support. In preparation for this changeover we have been working hard with the DWP and other stakeholders to ensure that we are ready to fully support and assist our residents in this change,” said Councillor Llewellyn-Burke, Cabinet Member for Finance and Performance.”

Computers in MSDC reception area and local libraries will be available for applicants. We have also entered into an agreement for 2018-19 with the local Citizens Advice to provide Assisted Digital and Personal Budgeting Support to customers in receipt of, or applying for, Universal Credit. We plan to have a presence in Job Centres within the district, along with local Citizens Advice.

Council Tax Support is not included in the switch to UC and applications must continue to be made to the local authority. In addition, we have a limited fund of Discretionary Housing Payment to help those with a shortfall of housing costs within their UC.

Full details on Universal Credit including how to apply for Council Tax Support and DHP are available at https://www.midsussex.gov.uk/revsandbens/benefits/universal-credit/ and we plan to keep this webpage regularly updated.