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Explains how a General Credit rule change could cut benefits

A HUGE Universal Credit change introduced today could force half a million Britons to apply for part-time work or risk getting their payments back.

The Department for Work and Pensions today launched the ‘Ways to Work’ program to put 500,000 Common Credit users to work at the end of June.

A major Universal Credit change to how you're expected to look for work could keep your payments up to date

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A major Universal Credit change to how you’re expected to look for work could keep your payments up to dateCredit: Alamy

It will aim to help households prepare for rising prices when cost of living reduced is expected to get worse, with Energy bills, tax increases and more is expected to increase.

There are around 1.2 million jobs currently on offer – 59% more than before the pandemic – even though the unemployment rate is still at a record low.

Now, the government wants benefits-based Britons to help fill vacancies to help with the nation’s post-Covid recovery.

But the new show will see the rules raised when it comes to General Credit claimant looking for a job.

It could mean you risk having your claim cut during the start.

Here’s what you need to know about the rule change and how it might affect you.

What is changing?

If you are claiming Universal Credit, you must commit to finding a job that will help you get back to work and not have to receive benefits.

This is called a “requester commitment,” and it usually takes about three months to find a role in the industry or career you’re already in.

Then you are expected to look beyond for a role.

Under today’s shakeup, it now takes just a few weeks to find a job in the industry you’re in.

From week four, you will have to look for a job in other areas of work that you may have never considered before.

As this is a mandatory requirement today, you may have your benefits cut off if you don’t expand your search.

The DWP says you’ll have more time with your Job Coach to help assist you in your search for a role.

Who is affected?

The shake-up is intended to bring people who have been classified by the DWP as in an ‘intensive job search group’ to get a job faster.

We’ve asked the DWP who this involves, and we’ll update you when we have more information.

So if you’re sick or classified as vulnerable – for example, if you have a mental health problem – this means you won’t be affected.

This is because you will be classified differently by the DWP as having limited ability to work and work-related activities and will most likely not be subject to the same sanction rules.

You should check with Work Coach for more information on whether the new rules apply to you.

What are the sanctions?

If you don’t show you’re making “reasonable efforts” to find a job in any industry – not just the one you’re working in – or you turn down a job offer, you could be punished. penalty from the fourth week of the job search. .

Sanctions are when you have your General Credit payment reduced for a certain period of time because you failed to fulfill your claimant’s commitments without good cause.

The amount you’ll receive from your paycheck depends on your individual circumstances, including what you’ve been sanctioned for and whether you’ve been sanctioned in the past.

There are four sanction levels – higher, medium, low, lowest.

At a higher level you can be initially penalized for 91 days if you don’t apply for a job when asked, or turn down a job when you meet the ‘workability requirement’ – that’s where you can and are willing to take. work immediately.

On average, you could initially be penalized for 28 days if you don’t take “all reasonable actions” to find a paying job or increase your income.

Meanwhile, you can get a low sanction – which lasts for seven days or until you do whatever you’re sanctioned for – for not taking a “specific action” to get work. .

You can apply for emergency money to help cover family bills by asking for a hardship payment.

This is a loan, so you’ll have to pay it back when your penalty ends, and you’ll need to contact the Common Credit helpline to apply on 0800 328 5644.

To get it, you struggle to pay basic bills, prove that you’ve done your best to stop spending money on unnecessary things, and that you’ve done everything you can to try to make money from it. other, such as asking your local council or charity for help.

You can appeal a General Credit penalty – you need to write to the department that made the decision for you.

This address will be found on the decision letter you will receive telling you about your sanction.

You will need to say why you think the decision is wrong, provide any evidence, and you can request a reconsideration within one month of the decision.

It comes as a change the rules of disease notes will affect millions of Universal Credit claimants.

Thousands of claimants can get payment after The DWP lost a legal battle.

We also explain if you can get a mortgage if you are using Universal Credit or your state pension.

Barclaycard customers are receiving ‘mysterious’ cashbacks of up to £300 – are you one of them?

https://www.thesun.co.uk/money/17455150/universal-credit-rule-change-cut-benefits-explained/ Explains how a General Credit rule change could cut benefits

JACLYN DIAZ

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