These are the last places the new flagship programme is coming to – and it will now will be in every job centre in the country for new claims.
You only need to be aware of this if you're making a new claim for benefits – if you’re already on them then you don’t need to apply or swap unless you’re told to.
Once this rollout is complete the DWP will start transferring people over onto UC starting from next year.
Around 10,000 are set to be moved across first, and they will get help with making a new claim.
But the new Universal Credit system's rollout has been far from smooth – with many Brits claiming it's pushing them into debt.
One single mum told us how she was at risk of losing her home after applying for Universal Credit – because she couldn't claim help with her mortgage debt.
And yesterday another Brit said she couldn't even afford a loaf of bread while she waited for her payment to come through.
How to get ready
1. Find out when it’s coming in your area
If your Jobcentre area is not on the list then enter your postcode here to find out when it’s coming to near you.
2. Open a bank account
Most people will need a bank account to receive benefits – or a similar account with a credit union or building society.
You need to be able to receive payments and set up direct debits and standing orders with it too.
If you’re living with your partner and you’re both eligible for Universal Credit, you’ll get a joint payment – so you might want to consider a joint account too.
3. Get online
The new Universal Credit system is mainly online, though you can get help in the job centre and over the phone too.
Most Jobcentres and libraries have computers and free wi-fi you can use if you can’t get online.
And if you’re using it from home on a budget, make sure you shop around using services like U-switch to get the best internet deal too.
4. Prepare your budget and income
Drawing up a budget of all your household incomes and outgoings will be helpful before you make a claim for Universal Credit.
UC will be paid to you in one monthly payment for the six benefits, but in some extreme circumstances you can ask for it to be paid fortnightly or even weekly.
Consider how much you get or expect to get in benefits, work and other income, and when in the month they come in to try and help you budget.
And you'll need to know information about your existing savings and pensions.
Before you apply you should also work out your outgoings on everything from rent, food and travel, to electricity, gas, phone bills, and paying off debts.
You can use a benefits calculator here to give you an estimate of what you could get.
Bear in mind there's a cap on the total amount of benefits that most people can get – some benefits are included in the cap but others are not.
You'll also need some form of ID to prove who you are – it can be a passport or driving licence, but they also will accept things like debit or credit cards too.
What you should know about Universal Credit
Universal Credit rolls six benefits into one.
This includes working tax credit, child tax credit, income based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Income-related Employment and Support Allowance, and Housing Benefit.
If you're already on benefits, you don't need to apply for Universal Credit unless your circumstances change or you're told to by the DWP.
UC is paid in arrears – like earnings – rather than in advance.
They work it out by looking at how much you earned in the last assessment period – so anything you earn after you start a claim will count towards your income levels and could affect the amount of benefits you'll get.
You can earn a certain amount under Universal Credit but if you earn more than the allowances then your benefits will be reduced.
What to do if you have problems claiming Universal Credit
If you are experiencing trouble applying for your Universal Credit, or the payments just don't cover it, here are your options:
Apply for an advance – Claimants are able to get some cash within five days rather than waiting weeks for their first payment. But it's a loan which means the repayments will be automatically deducted from your future Universal Credit pay out.
Alternative Payment Arrangements– If you're falling behind on rent, you or your landlord may be able to apply for an APA which will get your payment sent directly to your landlord. You might also be able to change your payments to get them more frequently , or you can split the payments if you're part of a couple.
Budgeting Advance – You may be able to get help from the government to help with emergency household costs of up to £348 if you're single, £464 if you're part of a couple or £812 if you have children. These are only in cases like your cooker breaking down or for help getting a job. You'll have to repay the advance through your regular Universal Credit payments. You'll still have to repay the loan, even if you stop claiming for Universal Credit.
Cut your Council Tax – You might be able to get a discount on your Council Tax or be entitled to Discretionary Housing Payments if your payments aren't enough to cover your rent.
Foodbanks – If you're really hard up and struggling to buy food and toiletries, you can find your local foodbank who will provide you with help for free. You can find your nearest one on the Trussel Trust website.
Other benefits like Carer's Allowance, Personal Independent Payments, and Child Benefit are still separate to Universal Credit and won't be part of your lump payment.
But the income from that could affect your Universal Credit amount.
You might need to book and attend an interview at your local Jobcentre before you get your first payment.
Once you have successfully applied and have given all the relevant information, it will take five weeks for your first sum to come through.
But you can apply for an advance if you don't feel you'll be able to manage financially until that happens. The money you owe will be taken off your UC sum in future months.
After you've applied you can sign in to your Universal Credit online account to report changes in circumstances, add notes to your journal, see anything you need to do, and check when your payment is coming.
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