Important information if you claim Universal Credit

At a full meeting of East Lothian Council on 20 February 2024, councillors approved a seven per cent rent increase for council tenants for financial year 2024/25.

If you are a council tenant and claim Universal Credit, you will need to inform The Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) of your increased rent charge so that the housing cost element of your Universal Credit payment can be increased.  The council is unable to do this on your behalf, DWP will only accept this notification from individual claimants.

What to do and when

You cannot report this change to DWP in advance. You will need to log on to your online Universal Credit journal on 1 April 2024 to advise DWP of your new rent charge. If you are unable to report this change on 1 April you will need to do so within your assessment period.

If you fail to do this you will not receive your full housing costs from DWP and you will need to make up any shortfall yourself.

For help, contact your Work Coach or the DWP freephone helpline on 0800 328 5644.