DWP confirms to begin notifying ESA claimants of move to UC in September 2024

Latest update: Move to Universal Credit

37. On Friday 19 April 2024, the Prime Minister made a speech that included the announcement to accelerate the movement of Employment Support Allowance (ESA) and ESA with HB claimants to UC.

38. Many claimants will be better off on UC than legacy benefits and we estimate around half of our ESA and ESA with HB claimants would receive over £100 a month more on UC. Claimants will also be able to benefit from improved work incentives and enhanced labour market support for those who want it.

39. Our delivery approach and timelines will be informed by detailed planning and engagement with stakeholders, but our current planning assumption is that we would begin notifying this group in September 2024, with the aim of notifying everyone to make the move by December 2025. 

40. A new Move to UC communications campaign launched in March 2024 to help prepare claimants with other benefit combinations for their move to UC. The campaign is running nationally and is being delivered through radio, paid search (Google and Bing), outdoor advertising (bus stops and billboards), digital and social media advertising.

41. The campaign aims to tackle claimant fear and anxiety about moving to Universal Credit, using the headline ‘Keep things smooth by making the move to Universal Credit’. Advertising also signposts to www.gov.uk/ucmove, which is a new website containing supportive information, real life case studies and advice on how to prepare for the move.

42. A campaign toolkit has been produced for stakeholder use which includes frequently asked questions, newsletter copy, an email signature and social media posts. This can be accessed from this link Move to UC Toolkit

43. In addition, to aid stakeholders in supporting conversations about moving to UC, a third-party guide of useful information has been produced and distributed to stakeholders to enable them to support those households required to make a move to UC. This was emailed to all LAs. If you have not received a copy, please contact your local Partnership Manager.


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