New Universal Credit benefit system to be implemented


Benefits system. Pic: Richard McKeever

Benefits system. Pic: Richard McKeever

The  Universal Credit benefits system is to be rolled out in Tower Hamlets as well as five other London boroughs: Barnet, Brent, Hounslow, Wandsworth and Hammersmith and Fulham. The new system will launch on March 2.

The scheme, which rolls all the main out-of-work benefits into one single payment, has been set up primarily for working age people but will also cover people on low incomes and people who have just started a new job or increased their part-time hours.

The system has been adopted in parts of the country since the launch in 2013, and is expected to reach the rest of the country in 2016.

To claim Universal Credit, claimants will go through two stages; the first will be to make an online claim and the second will be a face-to-face interview at a Jobcentre Plus office.

Tower Hamlets Mayor Lutfur Rahman said: “Universal Credit will drastically change the way that people access their benefits. It is important for residents to be aware of the impact that it will have on household finances.”

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