Changes to Universal Credit announced

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Photo by flazingo_photos CC BY-SA 2.0.
9 February, 2018

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has circulated an update on developments with Universal Credit and Universal Support. Click here to view the bulletin.

When will Bristol move onto Universal Credit?

The DWP has released a rollout schedule for Universal Credit. It anticipates the following timescale for Bristol-based jobcentres**

June 2018
Bedminster JCP
Bishopsworth JCP
Bristol Temple St JCP

September 2018
Horfield JCP*
Shirehampton JCP
(*Also serves South Gloucester District
October 2018
Kingswood JCP*
(*Also serves South Gloucestershire District
Below are some of the key changes to Universal Credit. Please read the bulletin for full details. Note that the DWP will continue to circulate updates to Local Authorities as and when they occur.
Abolishing waiting days
from February 2018 the seven-day waiting period for new Universal Credit claimants will be abolished. All new claimants will be eligible for Universal Credit from the first day they claim it.
Increasing advance payments
From January 2018 the amount of advance payment a claimant can receive will increase from 50% to 100% of their estimated entitlement. From spring 2018 it will be possible to apply for an advance online. All payments of advances will be made recoverable over a period up to 12 months. 
Housing support
From April 2018, claimants who were previously receiving Housing Benefit and are transitioning onto Universal Credit will receive a transitional payment; an extra two weeks support
Providing support with budgeting
Claimants who have difficulty managing their finances currently qualify for help under the Universal Support scheme. The DWP is also working with Citizen’s Advice to explore opportunities for greater collaborative working to help claimants locally as they move to Universal Credit.


**The schedule focuses on showing the main 'go live' dates for respective Jobcentre areas and local authorities. The DWP is aware that due to the ways in which postcode areas are linked to Jobcentres and local authorities there may be occasions where a small sample of postcodes go live at a different time than stated in the schedule. Those Jobcentres and local authorities affected will be notified as part of the implementation process. However it is not practical to be able to show all of these instances on a schedule of this nature.


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