DWP alert as millions risk changes to benefits this month as changes announced | Personal Finance | Finance newsbhunt


Millions on benefits could see their payments change this month as new information regarding the cost of living and Universal Credit is set to update.

In August it was announced that the energy price cap will be £1,923 from October 1.

This is the lowest point since October 2021 – even though it is still much higher than what is used to in the UK.

As prices remain high, there is still some uncertainty about how quickly prices will come down and how much the cost of living crisis will ease during the winter.

From cost of living payments to interest rate announcements, there are several changes people should be aware of.

Universal Credit

The “managed migration” process of switching those on older benefits to Universal Credit will be expanded into all regions of Great Britain this month.

The DWP is also introducing a new automated “Conversational Platform” towards the end of September for Universal Credit claimants who are calling about a new or existing benefit claim.

Additionally, claimants who are in the “Light Touch” work group will be required to look for more work or better-paid employment from September.

This will involve claimants having to attend regular work-focused interviews and take part in work preparation activities.

Britons will be in the “Light Touch” group if they are working over 15 hours per week at the National Living Wage, but less than full-time hours.

£300 cost of living payment

While the exact date has not yet been disclosed by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), it has said most people can expect to see the £300 cost of living payment land in their account in autumn 2023. This could be any time from this month.

Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis is predicting the actual date the payment will land in bank accounts to be October or November.

To receive the payment, people must be claiming the following benefits during a soon-to-be-specified time period:

  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Income Support
  • Pension Credit
  • Universal Credit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit.

Child benefit changes

Parents and guardians had until August 31 to tell HMRC that their 16-year-old would be continuing their education or training if they wanted to continue getting Child Benefit.

Once a child turns 16, Child Benefit and Child Tax Benefit usually stops, unless the child stays on in full-time approved training or education.

If the child goes on to study A Levels, T Levels, NVQ, or joins another approved training course, parents can still claim those payments for them until they are 20. Parents will need to notify HMRC if this is the case.

Inflation announcement – September 20

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) will release the inflation rate for the 12 months to August on September 20. Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation is a figure used to explain how much the prices of goods and services have increased over time.

The rate at which prices are rising fell to 6.8 percent in the year to July, down from 7.9 percent in June.

Food inflation on items like milk, bread and cereals has come down, although remains high – at 14.9 percent.

Interest rates decision – September 21

The Bank of England will announce whether interest rates will be raised again on September 21. The central bank increased the base rate on August 3 to 5.25 percent.

If interest rates are higher, people will pay more to borrow on products like variable-rate mortgages – however, savings rates can also increase meaning people can get more for their money.


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