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TOPIC: universal credit nightmare

universal credit nightmare 27 Nov 2018 14:44 #11486

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just got back from the job center.they have moved me over from jsa to universal credit. was told my rent would be covered my first payment will be the 29th dec. so im trying to borrow some money of family members to tide me over for the 5 weeks, trying to borrow 5 £73 call it £375 to pay my bills and food, then i receive a phone call from incommunities housing association saying i owe them £683 for 6 weeks rent, as it wont be paid until 29th dec, and have agreed to pay them £15 a fortnight to pay this debt off. lying scumbags at the job center.
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universal credit nightmare 27 Nov 2018 16:07 #11487

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London, if UC is supposed to cover your first TWO weeks rent while your claim is being processed, why is your housing association saying you owe them money for six weeks rent? At the very least, shouldn`t it be three weeks? I`m thinking if you made your UC claim online last week? This first weeks rent should still be being paid for you? Who do you speak to, to confirm this?

Have you spoke to your housing association about claiming a `nil income` and filling in a form for this? People who HAVE nothing can`t be expected to cover their rent all of a sudden because their UC claim is in transition mode.

Take a note of the DAY your UC claim was accepted. From there, you will wait FOUR weeks for the claim to be processed and verified and then a further SEVEN DAYS until your monthly payment is paid. Keep track of this.
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universal credit nightmare 27 Nov 2018 17:50 #11489

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the incommunities income officer ,said they had stopped payment today, so last two weeks as not been paid.plus i owe 4 weeks rent up until the 29th of dec.
i just spoke on online chat to citizens advice they said this,
My understanding is that Incommunities fully understand how the switch between benefits works but they try to get you into the position of being a month in advance. Hence they want the £15 a fortnight,. Are you able to get here to the City Center citizens advice-on Thursday or Friday so that someone can speak on your behalf with Incommunities
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universal credit nightmare 27 Nov 2018 18:27 #11491

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I see. Best thing to do here London is to take up their advice and be assured that you have spoken to someone from CAB in relation to all this. Seems this two weeks `run on` is nothing of the kind if a housing association determine that you pay `up front` rather than in arrears. It`s all a bloody joke.
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universal credit nightmare 27 Nov 2018 18:55 #11494

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yes i will be at citizens advice on Thursday. ill let you know the outcome.
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universal credit nightmare 28 Nov 2018 10:00 #11505

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Best of luck London and remember too that you can ask for food vouchers and other help. CAB will keep you right on these.
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universal credit nightmare 28 Nov 2018 10:52 #11511

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I am sorry to hear your plight London123, of moving to the UC :sick: . I found this not sure if it helps about "Universal Credit advances"

www.gov.uk/guidance/universal-credit-advances?utm_source=8e7eff61-a57d-4dcf-8f1c-4fde3ba0e89c&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate
Do not let the behaviour of others destroy your inner peace.
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universal credit nightmare 28 Nov 2018 11:19 #11514

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El-dudeareno wrote:
I am sorry to hear your plight London123, of moving to the UC :sick: . I found this not sure if it helps about "Universal Credit advances"

www.gov.uk/guidance/universal-credit-advances?utm_source=8e7eff61-a57d-4dcf-8f1c-4fde3ba0e89c&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

i was told i could have an advance.but i would have to pay it back out of the pittance i will be receiving. and after already being in debt with the housing,i wont be able to afford to pay it.
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universal credit nightmare 28 Nov 2018 12:33 #11516

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This seems to be the case for most new UC claims where they can get an advance, but means they will have a shortfall in each monthly payment until that advance is cleared. It`s nothing more than a form of a loan. You would be better asking your bank for an agreed overdraft where the bank allows you that extra money but for an agreed sum to be paid back ON TIME before any interest is added. Just another way to survive if you have a good bank and know you can pay the money back. Otherwise don`t go there. :dry:
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 13:36 #11530

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comply or die wrote:
You would be better asking your bank for an agreed overdraft where the bank allows you that extra money but for an agreed sum to be paid back ON TIME before any interest is added. Just another way to survive if you have a good bank and know you can pay the money back.

This will Work Well Comply, IF One has a Bank Account in the first place, Millions of people in the UK Dont, Much more poorer people, we have to rely on the Post Office or Loan Sharks, Try getting Credit with a poor or No Credit Rating. :angry:
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 15:51 #11538

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Paul wrote: IF One has a Bank Account in the first place,

Very true Paul and not something people should get into anyway unless (a) they HAVE an account and (b) think about whether they want a loan from their bank or the DWP. Either way, they both have to be repaid. Universal Credit won`t be paid unless claimants have an account to pay it into as far as I`m aware? But even post office accounts are being targeted now as costing money to pay UC money into because the government contract with them expires I think in 2020?But they CAN extend that contract, so anyone already with a PO card account should not panic if they receive a letter from UC saying they MUST open a basic BANK account. It`s tosh! Even pensioners are being asked to do this and it`s NOT mandatory.
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 16:22 #11539

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been down to citizens advice today, about the rent arrears due to changing over to universal credit, got there at 9am then was given an appointment for 11am which i went to,explained every thing,and they tried ringing in-communities housing association to see if they could get it reduced, but after being on hold for 40 mins ,he said he could no longer wait as he could not get through and he had other customers to see,,and gave me a number for a debt company.so that was a waste of time.i explained to the cab that i had to pay out of my £73 a week if i get that much,that i had to pay £15 foe bedroom tax a week and £15 a week to the council for debt,so i would have £40 a week for all bills and food,and my bills alone are £50 a week. he said i could get an advance same as was told at jobcentre. i said then i would have £30 a week to live on.
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 16:31 #11540

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Hi London. It`s true that CAB have others to see and waiting times can be restricted. Was the housing association line engaged all the time or was the CAB advisor in a queue? Real shame someone didn`t answer the phone within the time you were there though as it would have clarified the rent issue a bit more. You still have this up-front rent to address and it`s either ask UC for an advance or find the extra money elsewhere, which isn`t easy.

CAB gave you a number for a DEBT company? Was it a charity that could speak to this housing association on your behalf? There are a few good ones out there but I can`t recommend many off hand as I`ve never used them. Step Change come to mind though as I read about them recently. I think Martin Lewis (from MSE forums) mentioned them too, so they must be decent.

How did your job centre meeting go?
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 16:47 #11541

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London123 "i was told i could have an advance.but i would have to pay it back out of the pittance i will be receiving."

Its this part these TORY PLANKS dont get :whistle: :evil: .When someone is living in a financial disadvantaged situation.Example:ZERO INCOME.Then they wont be in a bloody position to pay it back. I heard Rudder come out with something very similar on the tv and just confirms whats beneath the torys bonnets etc :whistle: :whistle: :angry: .
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 16:59 #11543

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london123, is this your housing association website?

www.incommunities.co.uk/what-is-universal-credit

I googled in-communities housing association and this came up. I went to their UC page. At the bottom, it states to get in touch as soon as possible regarding arrears or other issues. You have already done so and they are asking you for an ADVANCE rent payment. When you claim UC for the first time, you are supposed to get TWO WEEKS rent PAID up front that you DON`T have to pay back. Did the CAB person tell you this? The government announced it a month or so ago so it is now in motion.

Phone these planks again and tell them this. Ask why your housing benefit is not still in payment because for the first two weeks UC, your rent should still be covered and only the next three are not, but they are obviously asking you for this whole amount in advance, so if this is their policy, I would ask to speak to someone high up to confirm this. But make sure they know about the two week `run on` because they may not have deducted this from the amount they are asking from you.
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 17:31 #11547

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comply or die wrote:
Hi London. It`s true that CAB have others to see and waiting times can be restricted. Was the housing association line engaged all the time or was the CAB advisor in a queue? Real shame someone didn`t answer the phone within the time you were there though as it would have clarified the rent issue a bit more. You still have this up-front rent to address and it`s either ask UC for an advance or find the extra money elsewhere, which isn`t easy.

CAB gave you a number for a DEBT company? Was it a charity that could speak to this housing association on your behalf? There are a few good ones out there but I can`t recommend many off hand as I`ve never used them. Step Change come to mind though as I read about them recently. I think Martin Lewis (from MSE forums) mentioned them too, so they must be decent.

How did your job centre meeting go?

the commitment meeting went ok.
she asked why i had moved on to universal credit,i said i did not want to move on to it, i challenger her about my work coach saying i would not be in any rent arrears after moving over.
she said she could not understand why i was 6 weeks in arrears,she said the 2 weeks rent from job seekers which goes to incommunites direct should have been paid.
then i would be only 4 weeks behind. i asked if she could do any thing about it,she said it is not her department. i can carry on handing in sick notes every month for 3 months at the job center until i feel better. i asked her for a refund on the bus fairs, she said universal credit does not accept refunds for bus fairs. so no joy there either.

Phone these planks again and tell them this. Ask why your housing benefit is not still in payment because for the first two weeks UC, your rent should still be covered
also i have just emailed the housing officer at incommunities, asking this
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 17:36 #11548

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london123 wrote:
comply or die wrote:
Hi London. It`s true that CAB have others to see and waiting times can be restricted. Was the housing association line engaged all the time or was the CAB advisor in a queue? Real shame someone didn`t answer the phone within the time you were there though as it would have clarified the rent issue a bit more. You still have this up-front rent to address and it`s either ask UC for an advance or find the extra money elsewhere, which isn`t easy.

CAB gave you a number for a DEBT company? Was it a charity that could speak to this housing association on your behalf? There are a few good ones out there but I can`t recommend many off hand as I`ve never used them. Step Change come to mind though as I read about them recently. I think Martin Lewis (from MSE forums) mentioned them too, so they must be decent.

How did your job centre meeting go?

the commitment meeting went ok.
she asked why i had moved on to universal credit,i said i did not want to move on to it, i challenger her about my work coach saying i would not be in any rent arrears after moving over.
she said she could not understand why i was 6 weeks in arrears,she said the 2 weeks rent from job seekers which goes to incommunites direct should have been paid.
then i would be only 4 weeks behind. i asked if she could do any thing about it,she said it is not her department. i can carry on handing in sick notes every month for 3 months at the job center until i feel better. i asked her for a refund on the bus fairs, she said universal credit does not accept refunds for bus fairs. so no joy there either.

Phone these planks again and tell them this. Ask why your housing benefit is not still in payment because for the first two weeks UC, your rent should still be covered
also i have just emailed the housing officer at incommunities, asking this thanks for that info.
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 21:39 #11553

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"she said universal credit does not accept refunds for bus fairs"

The above is total bollocks! Any visit outside of 2 monthly visits to joke club is reclaimable.

Here is an FOI which explains this London123 so go back to roach and show it this:

Scroll down to travel policy :)


www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/460534/response/1124290/attach/html/3/IR%20111%20Internal%20Review%20Response.pdf.html
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universal credit nightmare 29 Nov 2018 22:45 #11554

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London123, the system is clearly in a state of chaos. I cringed when I read how the JC had reassured you about your HB on the other thread as I have had similar happen to me several years ago and it set me off going back and forth from one place to the next and spending hours sat in various waiting rooms when I was not at my best. The other aspect which I find most concerning is that there incompetence/negligence has put you in this situation when your health is not at its best either. Start to finish I would set it all out as a chain of consequences in bullet points and have a think about complaining to the local JC manager or beyond that approaching your MP. I am a bit surprised about the CAB experience, guess they are under severe pressure with the extra work load and gave you a by the book response.

The part about being told that ESA is being phased out and just automatically being put on UC is naughty as you can still claim ESA and should have been made aware of this option (they have been steamrollering people away from ESA since it began incorrectly directing people to apply for JSA and now UC and that was how I managed to win a case because I wouldn't have then done X after being told Y) - something which comes under the remit of ICE (Independent Case Examiner). Roach had no excuse as you were sat right in front of them and effectively admitted that 'is' being phased out not 'has'.

Going back to the two weeks automatic rent cover clearly a mistake has occured in the system (or your area has not yet got up to speed wiith the post code lottery that is Universal Credit). I would not at all be surprised to learn that the planks at the JC simply did not process things correctly whether that is accidental or lack of training still would amount to negligence. For years JSA and ESA depts have not communicated well with each other and I can't see much changing through UC either. None of this of course helps the immediate situation they have landed you in but having a complaint running at the same time might just be the difference in making them think twice before dishing out any more pain in your direction and it might come under the watch of someone who actually knows what they are doing - I have got lucky that way once or twice.
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universal credit nightmare 30 Nov 2018 08:30 #11569

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London wrote: she said she could not understand why i was 6 weeks in arrears,she said the 2 weeks rent from job seekers which goes to in-communities direct should have been paid.
then i would be only 4 weeks behind

You need to take this up with in-communities TODAY. Tell them what this work coach said about the two week run on from JSA. They can`t deny this fact and if they do, contact your local MP`s office.

Verc, I wasn`t too sure about people being still able to claim ESA now because it`s all UC and when you make the UC claim, they consider whether you have LCW (Limited Capability for Work/Work Related Activity) during the claim as you are asked to fill out the part about `do you have a health condition or disability`. Maybe london123 can tell us whether he filled this part of the form in when he made his claim?

They now call them `New` ESA and JSA but I think those are for contribution based, rather than income based. Meaning, if you have worked in the previous two years before claiming they allow the claim based around your national insurance payments. Contributions based JSA and ESA used to run for a year only and then you would be asked to make a claim for the income based benefit. Not too sure though how all this is playing out now that UC is jostling for position over these.
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