MILLIONS of people could see a boost to their bank balance in the New Year, with Universal Credit and other benefit payments set to increase for the first time since 2016.

Here’s everything you need to know about the Department for Work and Pensions’ proposed changes.

A five-year benefits freeze has been in place since April 2016, which is due to end in April 2020.

This means that from April, payments for working-age benefits claimants will rise in line with September 2019’s inflation figure of 1.7 per cent.

So families claiming £500 can expect an extra £8.50 in their pay packets.

In total, the result of this will be that an estimated 10 million claimants across the country will see a boost to the amount of money they collect – including 2.5million people on UC.

However, some other payments are set to rise more than 1.7 per cent, including some pensions which are expected to rise by almost double that amount.

Before the changes are made, claimants can expect to experience some differences in when and how they receive their payments over the Christmas period, too.

Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day are all bank holidays and that means payment dates for benefits will vary.

For those who receive their payments on the 25th, 26th and 1st of the month – the money will come a day or two early, due to the fact banks will be closed on the usual due date.