Universal Credit is designed to provide daily living support to people who are out of work, or who are on a low income. To be eligible, one must usually be over the age of 18 but under state pension age and resident in the UK. In addition, to unlock a payment, a person and any partner they may have must have less than £16,000 in savings.
Understanding Universal Credit is important to the millions of people who claim it, particularly amid the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, there are also changes which are worth noting throughout the festive season.
Many received early payment due to when Christmas occurred on the calendar, but this is not the end of changes which will take place this year.
Indeed, New Year’s Day is fast approaching, and with it, comes a difference for those expecting a payment on that day.
Those who were expecting a January 1 payment will now receive the sum they are entitled one working day earlier.
Therefore, the key date to bear in mind is December 31, 2020 – tomorrow.
However, there is another New Year change which is also set to occur – with a certain group of people needing to pay attention.
In Scotland, there is another Bank Holiday on January 4, 2021, which this year falls on a Monday.
Firstly, the COVID-19 installed boost to the payment is set to end in April 2021 under current rules.
In recent weeks, many have called for the boost to be made permanent, as it represents approximately £20 per week for families.
However, the DWP has said the matter will be reviewed in the New Year to ensure the appropriate course of action is taken.
Something claimants have been assured will take place is a rise to Universal Credit in April.
For the 2021/22 financial year, standard allowances will rise to provide further support to those who are claiming.
It could be worth bearing in mind how sums will be affected if a coronavirus boost were to be withdrawn.