The Department for Communities have released figures that show the live caseload for adults claiming Universal Credit rose by 80% between 1 March and 26 April.
The statistics released by the Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey revealed that the number of adults on the live caseload for Universal Credit was 70,000 on 1 March but increased to 126,000 by 26 April.
Application numbered for the eight weeks period, totalled 65,700, with a increase ten times higher in new claims recorded at the height of the crisis in mid-March.
Despite these unprecedented numbers, the Department was able to make 107,330 payments on time, representing 99.1% of all payments due over that period.
Minister Hargey stated: “I am very proud of the work my staff are doing and would like to thank them again for the way they have responded to this increase in work, at a time when they themselves have had to adjust to the necessary measures we have introduced to ensure they are protected as key workers. My Department will continue to do all it can to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic and I remain determined to ensure that those most affected continue to receive all the support they are entitled to.”