Moving to Universal Credit
Universal Credit is a single monthly payment, designed to reflect the way many people are paid their wages. It takes what would have been separate benefit payments made at different times into one payment. For some people adapting to this new way of receiving your benefits might be difficult. There is help available to support you.
The best things to do is read the information provided by Department for Work and Pensions, which includes advice on how you can prepare ahead of making a claim for Universal Credit.
Existing Universal Credit claimants
If you are already claiming Universal Credit and still need help after trying the resources on the DWP page above, you can speak to your Work Coach about Personal Budgeting Support. This will include a face to face meeting with one of our team to go through your budget. The more accurate information you have about what you spend your money on, the more useful the session will be.
If you prefer to look at your budget yourself you can use our online benefit and budget calculator or use one of the websites on the DWP page.
If you are concerned about how you will afford your payments to Exeter City Council when claiming Universal Credit, we want to hear from you as early as possible.
Exeter City Council as a ‘Universal Support’ provider and as debt collector
Exeter City Council is working together with the Department for Work and Pensions to offer advice and assistance to those whose benefits are changing to Universal Credit. This working arrangement is called ‘Universal Support’.
Universal Support takes two forms. One is called ‘Assisted Digital Support’ and the other is called ‘Personal Budgeting Support’. Assisted Digital Support is about helping people use the Universal Credit online service. Personal Budgeting Support will help people to budget and manage their finances.
Exeter City Council collects a range of payments from customers including Council Tax, rent etc. We feel that Personal Budgeting Support is important in this area as well.
We will provide advice on priority and non-priority debts and we will work with Exeter residents to address the causes of debt and to avoid homelessness. Independent advice from other agencies will always be available to our customers.
We will use a budgeting calculator tool as part of our Personal Budgeting Support. This tool is provided to Exeter City Council by an independent provider called Policy in Practice. All customer details for budgeting analysis will be held securely on this system. Details of the budgeting analysis will be given to customers and with a copy held on Exeter’s document management system.
Of course all customer information will be held by us in accordance with our Data Protection policy and General Data Protection Regulations. For more information about how we look after your information or to find out more about your rights go to our Data Protection pages.