Benefit tales

Most people who lose their jobs will soon have to wait five weeks before they get any cash help,

according to small print in the Universal Credit rules uncovered by the TUC as it launches a new campaign today (Wednesday), Saving Our Safety Net.

A YouGov poll reports opposition of almost four to one (pdf) to the five-week wait.

Currently most newly unemployed people have to wait two weeks they get their first benefit payment. But under new Universal Credit rules people will not be eligible for any help for a week and must then wait a further month for their benefits to be paid in arrears. This means that, other than the few who receive emergency help, any new claimants will have to wait at least five weeks for any cash.

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