Universal Credit

Universal Credit Jobcentre

Are you of pension age, jobless and wondering what the future is going to look like? Don't worry, you can start securing it by applying for Universal Credit or a Jobseeker's Allowance. The option you choose will mainly depend on your National Insurance record.

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Universal Credit

Universal Credit is a government's welfare reform policy. Though there are some pushbacks when it comes to the use of Universal Credit, there is a high probability that in a few years, people will no longer be using Jobseeker's Allowance {JSA}.

Jobcentres that are currently warming up to Universal Credit include Treorchy Job Centre, Oldway House Job Center and Bute Street Job center just to name a few. Universal Credit is expected to replace the following' legacy benefits':

  • Income Support
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Housing Benefit
  • Income-Based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • Income-Related Employment and Support Allowance {ESA}

Am I Eligible for Universal Credit?

To be eligible for universal credit, you must meet the following minimum requirements:

  • Be 18 years or older
  • Live in the UK
  • Have savings of not more than £16,000
  • Be eligible for pension

How Does Universal Credit Work?

Instead of having multiple payments, universal credits give the holder one monthly payment to cover their living costs. If this is done between two people, then the amount is divided between you two. You can get extra cash if you meet the following conditions:

  • If you pay for childcare
  • If you have more than one child
  • If you have a health condition
  • If you are disabled
  • If you have a disabled child
  • If you care for a disabled person

What is the Difference Between Universal Credit and Older Benefits

  • Unlike other benefits, Universal Credit is for both unemployed and employed citizens
  • Universal Credit pays you a single payment each month rather than quarterly or fortnight
  • Rent is now part of your Universal Credit payment

Note: Your Universal Credit is dependent on your income. If your income increases, your Universal Credit earns you less money at the end of the month.

Personal Independent Payment

Personal Independent payment is one of the most popular benefits at the moment. It was created to replace Disability Living Allowance and falls under the Department for Works and Pensions {DWP]. This benefit is for people with long term illness and disability.

If you have this cover, expect to earn a weekly sum of £23.20 - £148.85. Keep in mind that the amount you get is dependent on how the condition affects you and not the type of disease.

To claim your PIP benefit, you require to have the following information:

  • Your contact details
  • Date of birth
  • Your national insurance number
  • Your bank account number
  • Your doctor's name and telephone number
  • Times and Address of hospitals you have visited while abroad {If this applies}

Note: All PIP claims should be made by phoning the PIP helpline, which is more effective than visiting a Job center near you.

Abolished Benefits

Incapacity benefit was replaced with the Employment and Support Allowance on 31st January 2011. In 2013, the UK government abolished the social fund, crisis loans, and community care grants. The social fund office is now in charge of Budgeting Loans.

Budgeting Loans

These are interest-free loans offered by the Social Fund office to people who would like income-related benefits such as:

  • Rent in advance
  • Funeral costs
  • Footwear
  • Repaying hire purchase loans
  • Traveling costs
  • Furniture

Keep in mind that these loans are only available to those without Universal Credit. If you have Universal Credit apply for a Budgeting Advance loan instead.

How to Apply for a National Insurance Number

If you would like to apply for a National Insurance Number, you will require to make a call at 7p per minute and provide the following :

  • Residence permit
  • Driving certificate
  • Birth certificate

OR

  • Adoption certificate

  • Marriage certificate {If Married}

  • If your National Insurance Number is lost, fill out a CA5403 form online.
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