Universal Credit rollout reaches Sussex job centres

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A NEW benefit branded by ministers as a ‘revolution in welfare’ will be introduced at four Sussex job centres today (Monday, September 15).

Universal Credit will replace six existing benefits with one monthly payment, combining in and out of work benefits for the first time.

It is being gradually rolled out across the country, with today seeing Worthing, Littlehampton, Chichester and Bognor Regis branches introduce it.

Minister for welfare reform Lord Freud said: “Universal Credit is a revolution in welfare – a system that, for the first time, supports people both in and out of work. Already people across the country are benefitting from this greater flexibility.

“Under Universal Credit we are helping to create a higher wage, lower tax, and lower welfare society, with people moving into jobs faster, and able to increase their earnings safe in the knowledge that they are better off in work.”

The new system shifts focus away from the number of hours a person works to the amount they earn, removing the need to switch between benefits when working more than 16 hours a week.

Once fully rolled out, it is estimated Universal Credit will save taxpayers over £2.6bn each year in reduced fraud and error.

With access to HMRC’s real time earnings data, benefit payments can now be calculated exactly, and adjusted automatically to eliminate overpayments and ensure people receive the correct level of support both in and out of work.

The new benefit will replace jobseekers’ allowance, income support, employment and support allowance, working tax credits, child tax credits and housing benefit.

For more information, visit https://www.gov.uk/universal-credit

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