Major changes ahead as UK phases out legacy benefits for Universal Credit

A person taking UK bank notes from an ATM machine
-Credit: (Image: Mirrorpix)

A raft of benefits currently accessed by millions across the UK are set to be gradually phased out over the coming months, leading to significant changes for those dependent on these monthly payments.

These 'legacy' benefits will be replaced by the single-payment system known as Universal Credit (UC), with claimants being transitioned onto UC individually.

Recipients can expect to receive Migration Notice letters via post, detailing the necessary steps for the switch. A three-month window from receipt of this letter is provided to apply for UC, failing which there is a risk of payment cessation, reports Birmingham Live.

The six legacy benefits due for termination are:

  • 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)

Beneficiaries of these benefits will be contacted sequentially and should await their Migration Notice letter before taking action. Housing Benefit recipients are scheduled to receive their letters in June and must act promptly to apply for UC.

Following them, individuals receiving Employment Support Allowance along with Child Tax Credits will start getting notices from July. The DWP has advised: "You need to move to Universal Credit if you've received a Migration Notice letter, as one or more of your benefits will be ending soon."

"To continue receiving financial support you must claim Universal Credit by the deadline date given in your letter. This is three months from the date the letter was sent out."

"If you cannot claim Universal Credit by the deadline date, you should contact the Universal Credit Migration Notice helpline as soon as possible."