Full list as DWP shares people who won't be moved to Universal Credit

Department for Work and Pensions on 5th February 2024 in London, United Kingdom. The Department for Work and Pensions, DWP, is responsible for welfare, pensions and child maintenance policy. As the UK's biggest public service department it administers the State Pension and a range of working age, disability and ill health benefits. (photo by Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images)
-Credit: (Image: Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images)

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has disclosed information regarding individuals exempt from transitioning to Universal Credit amid the shift from previous "legacy" benefits.

Currently, the DWP is facilitating a process termed managed migration, which has been accelerated to transition all beneficiaries to Universal Credit by 2025. Nevertheless, there are specific exceptions. Certain beneficiaries will continue receiving their existing legacy benefits or transition to Pension Credit instead.

The DWP's newly launched Universal Credit transition website clarifies that those who only receive Housing Benefit and they, or their partner:

  • Are of state pension age (66 years old or over)

  • Live in temporary accommodation provided by a council because you were homeless

  • Live in supported accommodation including refuges, hostels, extra care housing and some sheltered housing

Certain groups will continue to receive assistance with their housing costs through Housing Benefit. The DWP has clarified that individuals receiving only 'new style' benefits such as New Style Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) or New Style Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) will not be required to transition to Universal Credit; they will remain on their current benefits, according to the Mirror.

For individuals at state pension age who are currently receiving Tax Credits, the DWP might request that they apply for either Universal Credit or Pension Credit, based on their specific circumstances. This is also applicable to mixed-age couples where one partner has reached the state pension age.

The DWP will contact you when it's time to make the change, informing you of the benefit you should apply for and the deadline to do so.

The official website states that if you are invited to claim Pension Credit or are already a claimant, you will be issued a Tax Credit Closure Notice. Should you be directed to claim Universal Credit, you have the alternative to claim Pension Credit instead, if you qualify.

However, it is important to note that in doing so, you forfeit any transitional protections and lose the ability to revert to Universal Credit at a later time. The DWP cautions that transitioning to Universal Credit might lead to a notification from HMRC regarding tax credit overpayments.

Currently, you have a three-month period to lodge a Universal Credit claim once you receive your migration notice. Not submitting a claim within this timeframe may lead to a forfeiture of benefits.

Starting in July, as per the DWP's phased approach, individuals receiving Employment Support Allowance and Child Tax Credits will begin to get their migration notices. This will be followed by those on Jobseekers Allowance in September. Households that receive Tax Credits and Housing Benefits started getting their notices in April and must submit their claims by July.