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The full roll-out of Universal Credit is being delayed by a year until March 2022, according to the Department for Work and Pensions.
The full Universal Credit service will be delivered nationally for all new claimants by September 2018.
After the transition process has completed the Government will then begin migrating all remaining existing benefit claimants to the full Universal Credit service from July 2019 and plans to complete this by March 2022.
Universal Credit is a single monthly payment for people in or out of work, which merges together certain benefits and tax credits, including Jobseeker’s Allowance and housing benefit.
There are currently 280,000 UC claimants are on the system and the aim is to have seven million people on the credit by 2022. This is the seventh announced delay in the roll-out of UC.
The Institute for Fiscal Studies estimates that 2.6 million families will be on average £1,600 a year worse off under Universal Credit that under tax credits, although it says 1.9 million will be £1,400 better off. It says couples with children will gain more than single parent families and those on the lowest wages will be better off, as long as they work above a certain number of hours. Also likely to lose out are families with two earners.