.PORTSMOUTH City Council has issued a statement advising people of how to deal with universal credit’s arrival – to avoid being caught out by it.
If you’re not confident using the internet, either on a smartphone, tablet, laptop or computer, the first thing you need to do is sign up for a beginner’s computer skills course.
If you don’t have access to the internet, there are lots of places where you can use a computer, or free WiFi for your smartphone or tablet.
It’s even possible to claim universal credit without a mobile phone number, but you must have your own email address.
Universal credit will be paid direct to your bank, building society, credit union or post office card account. If you don’t have an account, open one now.
If your account is overdrawn and you’re worried about your universal credit payment being swallowed up, find out about opening a fee-free basic bank account that won’t charge you for missed payments and won’t let you go overdrawn.
If you’re used to planning your budget over one or two weeks, think about how you’ll manage with monthly payments.
If your wages aren’t paid monthly, or your pay varies, the amount of universal credit you get each month will change too.
Think about setting up your important bills to be paid by direct debit just after you receive your universal credit payment.
When you claim you’ll need to provide things like your tenancy agreement, proof of any savings, your National Insurance number and proof of your identity.