The government plans to switch all legacy beneficiaries to Universal Credit.
The move has left those receiving the payments worried about whether or not they will be worse off financially. However, they don’t have a choice, regardless of losing money and wanting the changes to be completed by the end of 2024.
Martin Lewis addressed the concerns on ITV’s Martin Lewis Money Show Live tonight. He had unfortunate news for 35% of legacy beneficiaries.
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Martin said: “Legacy benefits are things like Employment Support Allowance or Income Support. There are 2.6 million people who still receive them.
“If my memory serves me right, I believe that according to government statistics, 55% of them will be better off going to Universal Credit and 35% will be worse off.”
He added: “Those who will be better off tend to be those who work and pay rent, particularly in the cities with higher housing benefit elements or those at the top end of Universal Credit.
“Those who will be worse off could be those who are not renting or unemployed. If you fall into that category, you might be worse off, but you’ll be automatically relocated sometime by the end of 2024, and there’s nothing you can do about that.
“We clearly have a problem with the benefits system at the moment. It was raised 3% in inflation last year and inflation is now 9%, which is a massive blow to those on the lowest incomes. I think that needs to be addressed.”
He ended with some advice for those who would be better off. Martin said: “What I would say, for those of you in the 55% who may be doing better, you can actually apply for a move to Universal Credit sooner.
“It is important to understand that you cannot change your mind by making this request. Don’t rely on an online benefit calculator, get an individual assessment from a duly qualified free benefits expert.”
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