UPDATE 1 April  2020

Please note that debt recovery activity will be stopping as soon as possible. This includes all benefit-related overpayments, Social Fund loans and Tax Credit debts. Many activities will cease immediately but others may take a longer to implement.

The suspension of recovery action is in place until further notice and will enable more staff to be moved to support the front line delivery of payments.

For those who are not on benefits, we have directed private sector debt collection agencies to stop their activity for Debt Management customers and we are suspending voluntary debt repayments and recovery by Direct Earnings Attachments.

Repayment of advances for Universal Credit will continue.

UPDATE 30 March 2020

Please find a link to Gov.uk to confirm that a new to Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) will currently NOT be by paper form but will be a telephone claim.

How to claim

Those claiming Universal Credit should update their journal with a request to claim ESA and the Case Manager or Work Coach will respond. New claims to ESA for claimants not claiming Universal Credit will need to be by telephone. 

UPDATE 30 March 2020: 

Please note that the telephone service (0800 328 5644) for the Universal Credit Service Centre will temporarily be restricted to 9:30am to 15:30pm in order for colleagues to focus on the payment of the large numbers of claims we are receiving. We apologise for any inconvenience but know that you will appreciate that our priority is the assessment and payment of claims.

Hastings Jobcentre closed

Jobcentre doors are temporarily closed to the public.

There is a poster on the door to advise that face to face contact will be under exceptional/emergency circumstances and only where the claimant is vulnerable and is unable to contact the DWP by phone or digital means.

If the claimant does attend an appointment, they will be required to remain an appropriate distance from Jobcentre staff and will be seen in a screened environment where possible.

Anyone coming to the Jobcentre without a pre-arranged appointment, will not be able to gain access but will need to call the number to see whether face to face contact is appropriate.

The Help to Claim service by Citizens Advice is still available,  but only by phone and/or web chat.

DWP upates

Universal Credit and  Coronavirus

Info about coronavirus and claiming benefits. Please check this page regularly for updates on the arrangements the DWP are making for people affected by coronavirus.

ARTICLE: Benefits and Cornovirus

Guidance for employees

You can get £94.25 per week Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) if you’re too ill to work. It’s paid by your employer for up to 28 weeks.

Guidance for employees

Workers' support package

A new Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will be set up to help pay people’s wages. Employers will be able to contact HMRC for a grant to cover most of the wages of their workforce who remain on payroll but are temporarily not working during the coronavirus outbreak. Any employer in the country- small or large, charitable or non-profit will be eligible for the scheme.

Workers' support package