Universal Credit for local authorities

This collection brings together documents, information and updates about Universal Credit for local authority staff.


  1. Documents

Universal Credit will simplify the benefits system by bringing together a range of working-age benefits into a single streamlined payment. It aims to:

  • simplify the system, making it easier for people to understand, and easier and cheaper for staff to administer
  • improve work incentives
  • smooth the transitions into and out of work
  • reduce in-work poverty
  • cut back on fraud and error.

The Universal Credit Pathfinder successfully completed its roll out on 29 July 2013 when Warrington and Oldham Jobcentres began accepting claims. They joined Ashton-under-Lyne and Wigan who were already taking new claims to Universal Credit.

Universal Credit partner toolkit

A Universal Credit toolkit is available to inform and help partner organisations, particularly those in the pathfinder locations.

Further information

Lord Freud wrote to local authority chief executives on 1 August 2013 giving further information on the roll-out of Universal Credit.

In addition to the four pathfinder sites that have already started taking claims:

  • an additional 6 Jobcentres will start to accept new claims from unemployed single claimants from October 2013
  • we will start the cultural transformation that the benefit will bring through the national implementation of the Claimant Commitment and enhanced jobsearch support across all Jobcentres.
  • 10 in-work conditionality pilots will test how best to encourage claimants to progress in work
  • we will improve access to digital services across Jobcentre Plus, to ensure that jobseekers become used to online transactions.

The full version of the letter also includes an update on local support services.

Representative groups

Partnership Forum

The Partnership Forum is designed to give local authorities the opportunity to input to Universal Credit and the wider welfare reform agenda.

Transition Working Group

The Transition Working Group provide an expert operational view to transitional planning.

Support and Exceptions Working Group

The Support and Exceptions Working Group help to design parts of Universal Credit for people who need alternative methods of payment.

Scottish and Welsh Advisory Groups

The Scottish and Welsh Advisory Groups cover all aspects of implementation and delivery in Scotland and Wales.

Finance and Commercial Working Group

The Finance and Commercial Working Group covers all financial aspects of Universal Credit and how local authorities may be affected.

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