The new single benefit, which the government claims will simplify the welfare system, is to be introduced six months earlier than planned.

The streamlined Universal Credit, which replaces a range of existing benefits, will be trialled in Tameside, Oldham, Wigan and Warrington from next April.

Up to 1,500 new claimants are expected to take up the benefit in those areas.

Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith said that this will be followed by a roll-out in October 2013.

Full story on the BBC website


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