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UK: Hundreds of thousands who lost jobs in pandemic denied universal credit

300,000 universal credit applications in first few months of pandemic deemed ineligible due to savings

At least 300,000 applications for universal credit during the first four months of pandemic were deemed ineligible because those trying to claim had over £16,000 in savings or their partners were deemed to earn too much under strict means-tested welfare rules, according to official figures  obtained by the Labour party.

Many who were turned down for universal credit – or who qualified for a reduced level of support that covered only a fraction of their monthly outgoings – have struggled to pay their rent, mortgage and other bills after their household income dipped dramatically as a result of redundancy or the collapse of their business.

The ending of the job retention scheme has triggered fears of a living standards crisis for middle-income families who are forced by the Covid-19 economic crisis to turn to the benefit system in large numbers for the first time. Read more via TheGuardian

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