Excl: Universal Credit – DWP reverts to ‘legacy benefits’ in ‘live service’ areas


The roll-out of Universal Credit (UC) has been a national disgrace to the government and a disaster to claimants, many of whom have found themselves penniless and forced into debt or even evicted as a result of huge delays in payments – not to mention the intentional delays built into the process of switching from existing benefits to UC.

The Tories have attempted to justify their determination to press ahead with the roll-out – in spite of being informed by Labour, charities and campaigners of the hardship and suffering being caused by the chaos and unfitness of the UC system – by means of ridiculous claims or simply closing their ears.

On occasion they haven’t even attempted to justify it, instead simply hiding from debates and refusing to vote when they expect to lose, so they can pretend a unanimous defeat isn’t really a defeat.

But it seems the chaos is so profound that the government, without informing the public or press, has abandoned the extension of the system ‘until further notice’ in some of the areas where it has been launched.

DWP sources told the SKWAWKBOX:

Frontline staff have been notified that no new claims are being taken in ‘Live Service’ areas until further notice – claimants are to be advised to claim ‘legacy benefits’ such as ESA (Employment Support Allowance), JSA (Jobseeker’s Allowance) or IS (Income Support).

New UC claims are only being accepted in ‘Full Service’ areas.

‘Live Service’ areas are those where UC is active but has not been fully rolled out. ‘Full Service’ means UC has been fully rolled out.

Sources say that this unpublicised action is being taken because of serious issues with UC’s IT platform.

Sadly, claimants in areas where UC has been fully rolled out will continue to suffer under this inadequate system.


The DWP has been contacted for comment but has not so far responded.

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  1. As a DWP employee, can confirm the roll out has been “paused” in a last minute utter shambolic way. Utter typical chaos in the department, communications and guidance amount to propaganda and no-one really knows what they’re doing or meant to be doing.

    1. Sean, you really do need to make this known to the wider community and not just to us nerds on SKWAWKBOX.

  2. Yes some of us in my Unite Community Trade Union Branch are trying to change the political narrative on welfare which is dominated by the Tories (and backed up by the Right Wing media) re “Scoungers” and “Skivers” whilst benefit fraud is only 0.7% of the welfare budget (often private landlords claiming for non-existent tenants or peolple claiming for non-existent family members). In my opinion – point 1 – all wealth is created by working people (who also make societies work) and the rich and powerful legally steal their surplus labour “To stuff their mouths with gold.” Point 2 – the Tories DELIBERATELY SET NEGHBOUR AGAINST NIGHBOUR re welfare to distract from Tory tax cuts for millionaires and big business corporations (Corporate Welfare) and the rich are distant from most people’s lives and become INVISIBLE. Point 3 – there are TWO WELFARE STATES – ours the working class one – associated with being meagre, shame and stigma, and the upper class welfare state – £93b a year in tax cuts and incentives for the rich and better off, 1,000 tax reliefs, £120b tax avoidance, 10 tr dollars in illicit offshore banking accounts – the REAL GLOBAL SCROUNGERS who SELFISHLY AVOID GIVING TO SOCIETIES! I am a peaceful, left wing democratic socialist and I love the words of Pablo Neruda: “Rise up with me against the organisation of misery!” Solidarity!

  3. don’t forget that it was labour mp frank Field who introduced much of the welfare changes that are now in practice in the uk. Don’t forget it was Frank Field, only last week arguing for the threshold for payment for UC to be 4 weeks instead of 6 weeks – as if that is going to make much difference. the people of Birkenhead should get rid of this malaevalent, neo con artist as soon as they can – he is pernicious

    1. Frank Field also defied the Labour Party whip and voted with the Tories against the amendment to give Parliament the legal guarantee of a vote on the final Brexit deal struck with Brussels.

  4. Hey Skwarkbox,

    It wouldn’t surprise anyone if the Palace have fired yet another P45-loaded cannon-ball of outrage and contempt into Whitehall, but this time not across the bow of HMS Tatty Tory, but deep into the blackened heart of Darth Mater, the despicable Sith Lord of the Treasury with a clear message to ‘get it right or get the hell out of Dodge.’ And whilst the incompetent Tories may continue to roll-out what they call ‘social security reforms’ through the ‘impartial’ DWP the Palace as head of the Civil Service obviously do not appreciate large numbers of vulnerable citizens being made to suffer hardship and desperation because of cataclysmic failure by government. I imagine a third cannon-ball will soon follow suggesting that Homelessness be rapidly brought under control so that no-one Homeless dies this winter on UK streets, and that Child Poverty be eradicated once and for all. The Tory Government in collaboration with the DWP have failed the public, the grinding machine is broken, public confidence has gone, and with it the public’s respect as well. As Sovereign, the Queen must act with deliberate forceful intent to protect all her citizens because the Government cannot do so and refuse to do so. It is going to be a winter of discontent building to an election early spring. From a social perspective if the Queen is on-board with the people there is still hope of ousting the Torturous Tories in favour of a socialist government with humane and human-centred policies.

    Red Revolution, Love and Peace. Namaste 🙂


  5. hang Theresa may and her cretin party
    they are useless, traitors to the public of the United Kingdom.
    bring back hanging and hang Theresa NOW

    1. Nah don’t reduce yourself 2 the Barbarian’s level. Just elect Jeremy Corbyn!

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