Universal Credit can be applied for by those on a low income or out of work entirely. Additionally, claimants must be aged between 18 and state pension age, have less than £16,000 in savings and be living in the UK.
If a claimant is employed, their earnings will usually impact their payments, with Universal Credit gradually reducing by 63p for every £1 earned.
Most claimants will be able to earn a certain amount before their Universal Credit is reduced through work allowance rules.
The work allowance will affect claimants if they or their partner is responsible for a child or living with a disability or health condition that affects their ability to work.
The monthly work allowance will be £292 for those receiving help with housing costs, with all other claimants having an allowance of £512.
If a claimant’s earnings (including surplus earnings) are then still over that amount where Universal Credit payments stop, they will not receive state support.
Should a claimants earnings fall below the amount where their payment stopped, their surplus will begin to decrease.
Once the surplus has gone, Universal Credit payments will once again be unaffected.
It should be noted people will need to reclaim Universal Credit every month until their earnings have reduced enough to get another payment.
Once an initial claim is made, it usually takes around five weeks for the first payment to arrive.
Beyond this, payments will arrive once every four weeks on the same date of every month.
Claimants will be provided with a monthly statement that tells them how much Universal Credit they’re going to get.
How often a person receives income from employment can also impact how Universal Credit is paid.