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Universal Credit is paid each month for people in or out of work. It brings together some benefits and tax credits.
Universal Credit replaces:
- Jobseeker's Allowance (income based)
- Employment and Support Allowance (income related)
- Income Support
- Child Tax Credit
- Working Tax Credit
- Housing benefit
If you've lost your job recently you will need to claim Universal Credit rather than Jobseeker's Allowance.
If you are in low paid work you’ll need to claim Universal Credit rather than tax credits.
You can claim Universal Credit online.
If you need help
If you need help making your claim, call the Universal Credit helpline on 0345 600 0723 or text phone 0345 600 0743 between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Friday. Make sure you ask the person on the helpline to call you back so you don't have to pay for the call. It's particularly important to do this if you're making your claim by phone, as this can take up to 40 minutes.
If you qualify for Universal Credit:
- the Department for Works and Pensions (DWP) will pay it monthly into your chosen bank account
- if you get help with your rent, this will be included in your monthly payment You are responsible for paying your rent to your landlord
- if you live with your partner and you both qualify, you’ll get one monthly joint payment
- it will take several weeks after you make your claim to get your first payment