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Countdown to Universal Credit

From December 2017, Universal Credit will be phased in, affecting residents in Cornwall.

….It is not a choice.

….You will have to switch.

But don’t worry help is at hand!

 

What is Universal Credit?

  • It’s the new way that welfare benefits are going to be paid.
  • All benefits will be rolled into one and paid to you once a month.
  • There can be a delay of up to 6 weeks whilst the changeover of Universal Credit takes place, during which you may get no money.

We have therefore put together this simple flowchart to help you understand.


Flowchart

Take it step by step:

Step 1 – Are you of Working Age?

Yes – go to 2
No – Universal Credit should not affect you


 

Step 2 – Do you receive one or more of the following six benefits?

  • Housing Benefit
  • Income Support
  • Working Tax Credits
  • Child Tax Credits
  • ESA (income related)
  • JSA (income related)

Yes – go to 3
No – Universal Credit should not affect you


Step 3 – Are you able to access the Internet?

Yes – go to 4
No – Ocean can help by offering advice. Continue to 4 and contact Ocean at the end.


 

Step 4 – Can you cope with 1 large monthly payment coming in?

Yes – go to 5
No – Ocean can help by offering advice. Continue to 5 and contact Ocean at the end.


 

Step 5 – Do you have a bank account?

Yes – Great you are almost ready! Go to 6!
No – You will need a bank account so that your Universal Credit can be paid. Continue to 6 and remember to set up a bank account when you have finished reading this.


 

Step 6 – Don’t delay, prepare today!

  1. Make extra payments to your rent (eg. set up a Hi-£5 buffer account)
  2. Top up your prepayment card for gas/electric or switch to direct debit to spread the costs
  3. Seek help budgeting – Contact Citizen’s Advice Bureau (CAB) or Ocean’s Customer Accounts Team
  4. Use a savings card or stamps for food

 

Find out more about Universal Credit:

 

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