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Universal Credit

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by steviepal, Mar 23, 2020.

  1. steviepal

    steviepal Occasional commenter

    Anyone managed to get through on the phone to book your appointment? If so sell me your secret oh wise one.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  2. TheOracleAtDelphi

    TheOracleAtDelphi Established commenter

    I was just about to make a thread about UC!
    My question was a bit different though - do they contact your landlord?

    There's a big banner at the top of the page about not phoning/going to the job centre?
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  3. sharon7482

    sharon7482 Occasional commenter

    They said not to go and see them.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  4. JJ83

    JJ83 New commenter

    It was SO hard before to get any information about it and SO many rules about who can and cannot claim
    FINGERS CROSSED it is easier for all throughout this disaster
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  5. historygrump

    historygrump Star commenter Forum guide

    Once your are cleared for UC, you can apply fpr an advance payment,which you can payment back on a monthly basis over 12 months, so for example if you are due £500, in theory you can claim up to 100% and pay it back at £50 a month over 10 months, with the first payment coming out of your UC payment. If you start working you speak to somebody at the DWP, who can arrange for you to continue to pay every month out of your earnings.

    You may be required to complete the online journal, if you put down school or education work, that you are looking for, just no work schools are closed or have spoken to education agencies for example, i may keep them happy enough.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  6. steviepal

    steviepal Occasional commenter

    I left a message on my uc journal that I couldn't get though on the phone. They called me to arrange a phone interview within an hour.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  7. ridley14

    ridley14 New commenter

    It took me 2 1/2 hours to get through on Thursday. Got a message about a meeting on the Tuesday, which took place over the phone. He told me about an advance which would come off my first month, that wouldn't be until April or even May. A long time to be without money!
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  8. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    The Tressel Trust are campaigning to end the 5 week wait for UC.

    It is unacceptable to have to wait that long for money.
     
    agathamorse likes this.
  9. steviepal

    steviepal Occasional commenter

    You don't have to wait 5 weeks. You can ask for an immediate advance in your interview for uc.
     
    agathamorse and pepper5 like this.
  10. sadscientist

    sadscientist Senior commenter

  11. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    The last time I tried to get Universal Credit (or whatever it was called at the time, going back a few years) each interaction with the staff left me a quivering wreck for days at a time after. And my visits to the centre for paperwork were typified by claimants sobbing in lifts, security guards not letting you sit down on empty seats, and signage everywhere telling you to show respect to the staff. This was a centre where you would go to attain hardship rather than resolve it.
    I'd rather sell the shoes on my feet than go through that process again-the paperwork was insurmountable, the requested evidence was non achievable, the goal posts were moved on a weekly basis and after three months of this I was then told that they would send somebody round to my house to watch that I was not working.

    Two months later I secured a slot on local radio via a welfare group and told this story, dispassionately, and within three weeks had received a compensatory payment to cover the whole number of weeks. So I then secured another slot on local radio a month after that, and publically asked the DWP to come and take back the money because to me it was tainted. I said, on radio, that no amount of money could make good the psychological damage they can do to somebody in material need, and that for it me, no problem, I'm posh, qualified, befriended and lucky, but for those who are not so silver spooned of mind set, the benefits system is a poisoned chalice.

    I gave my payment to the local welfare group, but they probably spent it within five minutes on photocopies for other claimants trying to go through the application process.

    If you are a supply teacher-Don't do Universal Credit. Hold out and see what our government can do. Give it time. It's early days.
    If you're starving, pm me-I'll send you some potatoes. I can grow in a week far more than you can get in benefits in a month.
     
    pepper5 and sharon7482 like this.
  12. dumpty

    dumpty Star commenter

    I noticed the second question on Job Seekers Allowance was your NI number and as qualifying for it depends on your NI contributions, I presumed they would run an electronic check there and then and save me (and them) time if I have not paid enough NI.

    But no, this took me through to a full blown claim and now the waiting game. Still, it is either you qualify or you don't so I hope they don't put me through the entire interview and Spanish Inquisition only then to say 'not enough NI paid'

    I agree with @sbkrobson it is best to wait but with my agency still playing the 'we just don't know who willl get help yet' I could not take it anymore and got suckered into this claim.

    Will let you know how it goes.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  13. historygrump

    historygrump Star commenter Forum guide

    The question is if we apply for UC, then can we still be furloughed at a later date? The UC system is good in that 63% of any earnings are taken off any payment due, so would any furlough pay be considered as earnings. I have found that UC and the work coaches are generally good now a days, you may get one that acts like the inquisition. The DWP as decided the looking for work section is suspended during the present pandemic. As others have said you can claim an advance and then pay it back over the next 10 to 12 months.

    At the moment, I am tempted to hold out for a week or so, to see if we are to be furloughed or not and how much we can possibly get, in that in theory we could make different claims to different umbrella companies. But the wait cannot be going in for weeks without any decision being made.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  14. dumpty

    dumpty Star commenter

    I would say a resounding yes.

    The rules re benefits are clear in that at the point of applying you need to be out of work and actively seeking work, which you are.

    When your situation changes (let's say you are furloughed) you then must tell the benefits office and they will either take the money you get into account (if less than the benefit then you should be able to stay on it) or ask that you now consider yourself employed and so come off the benefit.

    Finally, there should be (I hope) some level of understanding here. The benefits office has to appreciate all you are doing is trying to get some clarity and cash - if the gov said we WILL get money from the end of April, we would not clog up the system.

    Only my view though :D
     

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