What is Universal Credit
Universal Credit has replaced these benefits for most people:
- Housing Benefit
- income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
- income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
- Child Tax Credit
- Working Tax Credit
- Income Support
You might be able to get Universal Credit if you’re not working or you’re on a low income
Universal Credit works differently from the old benefits – so it’s important to know the differences.
The biggest differences are:
- you can get Universal Credit if you’re unemployed but also if you’re working
- you’ll usually get a single payment each month, rather than weekly or fortnightly
- instead of getting a separate housing benefit, your rent will usually be paid directly to you as part of your monthly Universal Credit payment
How Universal Credit works
You’ll usually get one monthly payment to cover your living costs. If you claim Universal Credit as a couple, you and your partner will get one payment between the 2 of you. The payment is made up of a basic ‘standard allowance’ and extra payments that might apply to you depending on your circumstances.
You might be able to get extra payments if you:
- look after one or more children
- work and pay for childcare
- need help with housing costs
- are disabled or have a health condition
- are a carer for a disabled person or you have a disabled child
If you would like help checking if you are eligible for Universal Credit or to check how much you might get or any other issue, please contact Citizens Advice to see how we can help.