Universal Credit makes the welfare system simpler by replacing six benefits and credits into a single monthly payment if you are on a low income or out of work. It includes support for the costs of housing, children and childcare, as well as support for disabled people and carers.
It ensures that you will be better off in work and makes it easier for you to start a new job or work more hours. As your take home pay increases, Universal Credit will gradually reduce, meaning that your benefits don't end immediately if you are on a low income.
Universal Credit merges a number of existing benefits into one single payment:
- Income Support
- Income Related Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income Related Employment Support Allowance
- Housing Benefit
- Working Tax Credit
- Child Tax Credit.
Who is eligible to apply?
From 2 March 2015, singles, couples and also families across the Carlisle Borough can now make a new claim for Universal Credit if they meet all of the criteria which has been set by DWP.
- Check the full list of eligibility criteria
If you do not meet the criteria and need to claim an existing benefit, in most cases you can do this online:
What are the main changes?
- You will need to claim online (external link)
- Your Universal Credit will be paid directly to one person in the household each month
- Any help you get with your rent will be included with your Universal Credit payment and you will then pay the landlord yourself.
Support and information
Working in partnership with Carlisle and Eden Districts Citizens Advice Bureau, Carlisle City Council can also get you support to help you budget over a monthly period and manage your money so you are less likely to get into debt or arrears when claiming Universal Credit.
To arrange an appointment for personal budgeting support, please call 0344 600 0723 or contact the local Jobcentre where your work coach will arrange this for you.
For help in claiming Universal Credit, or for more information call Carlisle City Council on 01228 817200 or visit our Customer Contact Centre at the Civic Centre where one of our advisors will be happy to help. We offer help with Universal Credit award letters, advanced payment requests, arranging alternative payment arrangements and contacting the service centre for other general enquiries.