Universal Credit

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 31st October 2019.

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Photo of Laura Pidcock Laura Pidcock Shadow Minister (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Labour)

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether she plans to publish easy-to-read guidance on making a non-digital claim for universal credit.

Photo of Laura Pidcock Laura Pidcock Shadow Minister (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Labour)

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will consult (a) welfare rights advisers and (b) professionals with experience of supporting people with complex needs on drafting guidance on making a non-digital claim for universal credit.

Photo of Will Quince Will Quince The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The Department makes use of a range of channels to increase understanding of Universal Credit through social media and wider advertising. This includes signposting to sources of information which are written in an ‘easy-to-read’ format to help people make decisions on whether Universal Credit is appropriate for their circumstances.

We publish information in two key locations to help improve awareness of, and how to claim Universal Credit, which can be found at the following websites:

https://www.understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk/making-a-claim/before-you-claim/

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/universal-credit-detailed-information-for-claimants

If a person wishes to claim Universal Credit but requires assistance, they are clearly directed to either the Help to Claim service, or to the Universal Credit telephone helpline. Both can be useful to anyone who cannot use digital services.

Citizens Advice and Citizens Advice Scotland have been delivering the ‘Help to Claim’ service on a pilot basis since April 2019. The Citizens Advice Help to Claim service offers tailored, practical support from helping people make a Universal Credit claim up to receiving their first full correct payment on time. This service is available online, on the phone and face-to-face through local Citizen’s Advice services.

We regularly engage with a range of stakeholders, including welfare rights organisations, to ensure we gather and understand a diverse range of opinions, which helps us to design improvements to Universal Credit.

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