By Nicola Slawson in Huffington Post.
Universal Credit claimants are left “swimming against a tide of unmanageable repayments” when they are forced to take loans ahead of their first payments, it has been claimed.
The comments come as the government has responded to a damning report by the Work and Pensions select committee, which raised concerns about claimant debt.
The controversial new welfare system, which combines six benefits payments into one, encourages claimants to take out a loan while they wait for their first payment.
Many people are forced to take out the interest-free loan – called an advance payment – because the first payments of the new benefit take at least five weeks to come through after claimants apply, and in the meantime their existing benefits are stopped.
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