Welfare Reform and Bedroom Tax

The UK Government is making changes to the way various benefits are being paid.  As tenants of Grampian Housing Association you could be affected.  We are here to help you so if you are unsure about how this could affect you or you would like further information please contact us now on 01224 202900 or email info@grampianhousing.co.uk.

Working age benefits such as income based job seekers allowance, tax credits, income support, incapacity benefit and housing benefit are being replaced by a single benefit called Universal Credit (UC).  Aberdeenshire and Moray will go to Universal Credit Live Service Areas in June 2018 followed by Aberdeen City Council in October 2018.

DWP (Department for Work & Pensions) Guidance for Claimants 

You may find the following website and guidance from the DWP useful if you are or will be claiming Universal Credit:

Understanding Universal Credit - DWP website to support people with Universal Credit

Universal Credit and You - user friendly introduction to Universal Credit for Claimants.

Introduction to UC - basic information about UC and how it works, including how to make an online claim and what claimants need to do in return.

Getting ready for Universal Credit - step by step guide.

Universal Credit claimants can get help to make a claim and manage their payments of Universal Credit. This help is called Universal Support.  Click here to read the new Guidance issued by the DWP. 

Click here to read the latest Universal Credit Claimant Housing Guide.  It's interactive and very informative. 

Universal Credit: Scottish Choices
The Scottish Government has issued this leaflet about payment options for UC.  It includes information about paying housing costs direct to your landlord.  There is also a Question & Answer leaflet for claimants. 

You may also find the short videos at the bottom of this page helpful.  They explain about:

Your Money | Disability Benefits | Your Claimant Commitment | Sanctions

Currently Universal Credit is paid once a month in arrears as a lump sum to the person who claims it.  This means that payment for rent will no longer come to the Association direct from the local authority and claimants will have to make arrangements to pay the rent themselves from the Universal Credit they receive.

In future people on Universal Credit in Scotland will be offered two new ways to help them manage their money.  Anyone in Scotland making new claims in full service Universal Credit areas will have the choice of changing the frequency of their payments from once to twice monthly and to have the housing cost element of their Universal Credit paid directly to their landlord.  This short video gives you more information about Universal Credit in action.

The application process for Universal Credit is web based and the Association has online facilities at its Aberdeen and Elgin offices for our customers to use. 

We have the following services to help tenants with a range of issues.  Click on the links below to be redirected to the relevant page of the website for more information:-

ASSIST (Housing Support Project) - to help you maintain your tenancy and stay in your home.

SMART (Money Advice Project) - to help you manage your money, make sure you are receiving all the benefits you are entitled to and to advise on budgeting and any debts you may have. 

Further updates will be provided on our website and in future issues of Keynote (customer newsletter). 

Free Universal Credit Number

All DWP Universal Credit phone lines are now free and nobody will be charged when they need to call to get help with their Universal Credit claim.

The key Universal Credit Freephone numbers include:

• Universal Credit live service: 0800 328 9344 (this replaces 0345 600 0723)

• Universal Credit full service: 0800 328 5644 (this replaces 0345 600 4272)

Anyone calling the old numbers will hear a message informing them of the change and the new number to call. 

Your Money Aberdeen from Sandra MacIntyre on Vimeo.

Disability Benefits Aberdeen from Sandra MacIntyre on Vimeo.

Your Claimant Commitment Aberdeen from Sandra MacIntyre on Vimeo.

Sanctions Aberdeen from Sandra MacIntyre on Vimeo.


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