The Department for Work and Pensions has revealed a raft of changes to its payment plans for those on Universal Credit over Christmas.

As the festive month approaches, with a background of rising costs and disrupted supply lines, people are anxiously preparing for the typically expensive time of the year.

As a result a lot of attention is on the department and how payments to those in need will be made.

Payment dates

The dates when people will receive their payments will change to work in the Bank Holidays over Christmas and New year.

This year people will see their payments on December 24, if they would usually expect it on the 25, 26, 27 or 28th of the month.

This is to avoid the weekend days and the Bank Holidays, meaning people will be paid earlier.

If you are due to be paid on 1, 2 or 3 of January you will be paid on Friday, December 31.

the earlier payments could well be useful, but also means people will have to plan for a longer period afterwards without the support.

£10 bonus payment

Certain benefits claimants will receive a £10 bonus from the Government at the start of December.

But this does not apply to those who only claim Universal Credit, but instead to those making use of Personal Independence Payments (PIP), Jobseeker’s Allowance, Incapacity Benefit and other payments.

It has received some criticism after the removal of the temporary £20 uplift given during the pandemic. 

Tax credit changes

During the pandemic, those on Working Tax Credit did not need to inform the HMRC about a change in working hours, and would still receive the same amount of support regardless of any change.

But this will end on Novermber 25 and any changes to a claimant's hours will need to be reported to the department.

Failure to do so could result in fines of up to £300.

The new rules see Universal Credit claimants asked to take a photo outside their home and next to their street sign, as well as with a copy of their local newspaper, according to the Mirror.

But the DWP said the new checks are a last resort and have only been requested from a "small number" of applicants.

It said claimants will be able to request an in-person assessment where they are unable to submit the evidence.