The Department for Work and Pensions response to written question: universal credit

The Department for Work and Pensions has provided the following answer to your written parliamentary question:

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department is taking to review universal credit assessment periods when claimants receive two paychecks within the same assessment period due to a change of employer.

Will Quince:

Universal Credit seeks to take earnings into account in a way that is fair and transparent. The amount of Universal Credit paid reflects, as closely as possible, the actual circumstances of a household during each monthly assessment period, including any earnings reported by their employer or employers during the assessment period, regardless of when they were paid, or which month they relate to.

Assessment periods allow for Universal Credit awards to be adjusted on a monthly basis, ensuring that if a claimant’s income changes, they do not have to wait several months for a corresponding change in their Universal Credit award. Claimants can always discuss the implications of any changes in earnings with their case managers and work coach and can be referred to personal budgeting support to help them manage their budgeting.