The government plans to transfer all former benefit claimants to Universal Credit.
The move has left those receiving the payments worried about whether or not they will be in a more difficult financial situation. However, they will have no choice in the matter whether they lose money or not and the changes are expected to be completed by the end of 2024.
Martin Lewis addressed the concerns tonight on ITV’s Martin Lewis Money Show Live. It had bad news for 35% of inherited benefit claimants.
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Martin said: “Benefits from the past are things like Employment Support Allowance or Income Support. There are 2.6 million people who still qualify for it.
“If I remember correctly, I think 55% of them, according to government statistics, would be better off switching to Universal Credit and 35% would be worse off.”
He added: “Those who will be better off tend to be those who work and pay rent, especially in cities that have higher housing allowance type elements or those towards the top of Universal Credit.
“Those who will be worse off could be those not renting or who are out of work. If you are in this category, you may be worse off, but you will be automatically moved at some point by the end of 2024 and there is nothing you can do about it.
“It is clear that we have a problem with the benefit system at the moment. It increased inflation last year by 3% and inflation is now at 9%, which is a blow for people to the lowest incomes. This is something that I think needs to be addressed.”
He ended with a little advice for those who would be better off. Martin said: “What I would say, for those of you in the 55% who might be better off, you can actually apply to transfer to Universal Credit earlier.
“It’s important to understand that when you make this request, you cannot change your mind. Don’t rely on an online benefits calculator, go get an individual assessment from a suitably qualified free benefits expert. “
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