DWP Universal Credit update as thousands to receive crucial letter from today

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is currently moving people from "legacy benefits" to Universal Credit and from today, people claiming Housing Benefit will start to receive their important migration letters
-Credit: (Image: PA)


Thousands of Housing Benefit recipients are set to receive crucial correspondence from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) starting today. The DWP is in the midst of transitioning individuals on "legacy benefits" to the more recent Universal Credit system, a process known as "Managed Migration".

This transition is being carried out in phases, and from June, the focus will shift to those solely on Housing Benefit, affecting an estimated 100,000 claimants. Upon receiving your migration notification, you'll have a three-month window to apply for Universal Credit. Failure to do so could result in the loss of your benefits.

In line with the DWP's phased approach, from July, those on Employment Support Allowance (ESA) who also receive Child Tax Credits will be sent their notices. Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) recipients are scheduled to get theirs in September. Households that are on Tax Credits in addition to Housing Benefits began receiving their notices in April, meaning they must submit their Universal Credit claim by July, reports the Mirror.

Read more:

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has been gradually phasing out legacy benefits over the past few years, resuming the process last year after a brief pause due to the Coronavirus pandemic. When the managed migration restarted, approximately 2.6 million people in the UK were still claiming old-style legacy benefits.

The process was initially set to be completed by 2028, but the Government's plans changed earlier this year following Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's 'Sick Note Generation' speech. Now, all migration notices are expected to be sent out by the end of December 2025.

What to do when you get your letter?

As previously mentioned, once you receive your notice, you will have three months to submit a claim for Universal Credit. You can make your claim online, or over the phone by calling the Universal Credit Migration Notice helpline on 0800 169 0328.

Alternatively, you can seek assistance with your application from your local Job Centre.

After submitting your claim, there will be a five-week wait until your first Universal Credit payment is received, and you will continue to receive it going forward unless your circumstances change. Top-up payments are available for those who will be worse off claiming Universal Credit, and you can check how the move will affect you using an online benefits calculator.

The DWP recommends three benefit calculators:

Which benefits are affected?

The migration process is managed in stages and people on certain benefits will be asked to switch to Universal Credit at different times. This month's affected claimants are people who receive Housing Benefit, while people receiving Employment Support Allowance (ESA) who also receive Child Tax Credits will be sent their letters in July.

The government expects to have moved everyone on legacy benefits to Universal Credit by the end of 2025. The following benefits are coming to an end:

  • Tax credits: Working Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit

  • Housing Benefit

  • Income Support

  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)

  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)

Who can claim Universal Credit?

If you receive a migration notice, it means your legacy benefits are coming to an end and you should apply for Universal Credit within three months from the date on the letter. However, people on these older benefits are not the only ones able to claim for the benefit.

Universal Credit is for people who:

  • are on a low income

  • need help with living costs

  • are working (including self-employed or part time)

  • are out of work

  • have a health condition that affects their ability to work