Only around 500 people will be moved to UC at first, but the DWP will ramp up the pace after a few months
Up to 2.6 million people in Britain will be moved from six ‘legacy’ benefits to Universal Credit.
The massive shake-up will begin on May 9 this year, and the ‘managed migration’ of people on Tax Credits and ESA – which was delayed due to Covid – will happen between next month and December 2024, The Mirror reports.
Individuals will receive a ‘migration notice’ in the coming months, giving them a three-month deadline to claim Universal Credit or have their benefits stopped.
Only around 500 people will be moved to UC at first, but the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) will ramp up the pace after a few months.
But while officials say 55% will be better off on the new benefit, and people won’t lose money overnight, some will be worse off in the long term in the midst during a cost of living crisis.
And mental health and poverty campaigners are alarmed, as they believe some people will slip through the cracks.
Sophie Corlett of mental health charity Mind warned the plans could cause hundreds of thousands of people to be worse off.
She added: The consequences of cutting someone’s benefits can be fatal.
Around 2.6 million households claiming six different social welfare benefits will be replaced by Universal Credit.
These benefits are: Child Tax Credit, Housing Benefit, Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), and Working Tax Credit.
New claimants haven’t been able to get these benefits for a number of years, and have had to claim Universal Credit instead.
But people already on these six benefits, they didn’t have to move to UC straight away.
This transfer will now resume and, be completed by December 2024.