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Delays with Universal Credit payments

An Estate Agent called on behalf of one of their registered Landlords. Their tenant had applied for Universal Credit back in March and there had not been any payments since so arrears had built up.

We advised that UC payments are usually made to Landlords and advised on the waiting period for the first payment of UC of about 5 weeks, however this time has long since passed.

We outlined the need for the agent to have explicit consent from the tenant and explained without that UC staff may not give them any information. We suggested the agent get in touch with the tenant to see where the application was at and to request that they put on their online journal that UC can speak with the landlord/agent directly about their claim

We went through the financial support available for people waiting on their first UC payment (for example- advance payments which must be paid back and then possibly help from the contingency fund which does not need to be paid back) . We advised signposting the tenant to this support via their workcoach, to try to minimise the arrears and sustain the tenancy.

We advised that Landlords can apply for third party deductions from the claimants UC to address arrears. To initiate this the tenant needs to be at least 2 months behind with the rent and complete a form.