About us News and Blog Changes to Universal Credit for 2018 If you currently receive benefits (or may receive them in the future) our friends at Turn2Us have some handy updates on Universal Credit that may be helpful to you - this includes dates of when the proposed changes will take place. Don't forget, if you or your partner have worked in the UK fashion and textile industry, you may find that an FTCT grant can help with funding for essential items for your children. There’s more information at the end of this blog. What is Universal Credit? Universal Credit is a new benefit to support families. It is a single monthly payment for people in work - on a low income - or out of work. It replaces some of the benefits and tax credits that you might be getting now: Housing benefit Child Tax Credit Income support Working Tax Credit Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance Income-related Employment and Support Allowance If you would like more information about your own circumstances or want to know which means-tested benefits you may be entitled to, including tax credits, complete the Turn2Us benefits calculator. Less waiting time for new claimants From February 2018, the government will remove the seven-day waiting period for Universal Credit, so that the claim starts from the date of the application. So, if Universal Credit is paid on time, claimants will receive their first payment within five weeks instead of six weeks. Turn2Us is a national charity that helps people in financial crisis gain access to funding and support, like welfare benefits and charitable grants. Could an FTCT grant help? If your family budget is stretched, it’s really worth checking if you can apply for an FTCT grant – you can use it to buy essential items for your child, like school uniform or winter clothing, bedroom furniture for your child or, if your child has additional needs, therapy or specialist equipment. Our grants do not have to be repaid. We are here to help, to find out more about our grants or, if you have any questions, please call 0300 123 9002.