Universal Credit is a single monthly payment for people who are looking for work or are on a low income.

Universal Credit replaces the following working age benefits:

  • Housing Benefit
  • Income Support
  • Jobseekers Allowance (Income Based)
  • Employment and Support Allowance (Income Based)
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit

If you currently receive any of these benefits, you will be transferred as part of a managed migration process.  You may be transferred sooner if there is a change to one of your benefits or if you need to make a new claim. You’ll receive a letter (migration notice) if you are affected by the change to Universal Credit.

Managed migration timetable

Based on the government’s Autumn Statement the process is as follows:

  • April 2024 to June 2024 Migration notices will be sent to claimants receiving Income Support, and those claiming Tax Credits with Housing Benefit
  • June 2024 Housing Benefit only
  • July 2024 income-related Employment and Support Allowance with Child Tax Credit (with/without Housing Benefit)
  • August 2024 Tax Credit claimants who are over state pension age, will be asked to apply for either Universal Credit or Pension Credit, depending on their circumstances
  • September 2024 income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (with/without Housing Benefit)

Initially the managed migration excluded claimants in receipt of Employment and Support Allowance only (with/without Housing Benefit) until 2028, however the government announced in April 2024 that the migration of this group will be brought forward so that all migration notices will have been sent out by the end of December 2025.

Do I have a choice in moving to Universal Credit

If you get a migration notice, you should not ignore it and should claim Universal Credit within the deadline date stated on the letter to protect your income.  If you do not claim Universal Credit your benefits will stop.

Managed migration Help and Support

More information on the managed migration is available on the government website:

How to apply

When you apply you will need:

  • Registered ID, for example, passport or driving licence
  • A registered UK bank account
  • A computer with internet access

You can apply for Universal Credit on GOV.UK.

Help to pay your rent

When you claim Universal Credit you will need to tell them about your rent so that you can get help to pay your rent. This is known as Housing Costs. If your rent is currently paid direct to your landlord, in the future it will be paid to you. You will be responsible for paying your rent to your landlord.

Help with Council Tax

We handle claims for Council Tax Reduction. If you claim Universal Credit with the Department for Work and Pensions and you already receive Council Tax Reduction, you do not need to reapply. 

If you have claimed Universal Credit since 1 April 2022, we will use your Universal Credit claim to calculate your Council Tax Reduction.