Access to universal loans, pensions and other benefits will be lost from December due to a change in the payment method of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) or HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
People who are currently receiving payments via a Post Office Card account (POCa) will no longer be able to access their money as of December.
POCa, introduced as a “simple” banking facility for those who do not have access to regular bank accounts, has been a way for beneficiaries to collect their money since 2003.
However, the Post’s contract with the UK Government’s contract to provide this service ends on November 30, 2021.
A gradual exit from the services is almost complete – and the option will no longer be available from December 1, 2021, reports the daily record
The Post says people using POCa to get benefits have three alternative options. These are:
- Use an existing account you have with a bank, building society, or credit union
- Open an account with a bank, building society or credit union
- Use the payment exception service
“If you can’t use or set up a bank, building society or credit union account, the government will be in touch with you about their new payment exception service,” the Post says.
The payment exception service provides access to payments over the PayPoint network.
However, the government website states that the payment exception service is “only available in very limited circumstances”.
There is also a limit of € 100 on each payment collection you make.
“You may have to do more than one collection at a time to get the full amount you owe,” says the government.
At its peak, around 900,000 people across the UK used the post to collect payments.
However, for the past three years, DWP and HMRC have written to applicants encouraging them to have benefits and pensions transferred directly to a bank account instead.
HMRC recently warned tax credit applicants that the POCa deadline was approaching. It asked applicants to use the renewal package to enter updated payment information, including an account change such as banking details.
The POCa service was launched on Nov.
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