What is the best helpline number for Universal Credit?

*This website advises that calls to 084 numbers cost 7p/min plus your phone provider’s access charge.

Universal Credit was introduced in 2013. It superseded and replaced six different UK benefits. Jobseeker’s Allowance, Housing Benefit, Working Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, Employment and Support Allowance, and Income Support have all been replaced with Universal Credit. It is one of the largest reforms introduced under the Welfare Reform Act, which came into place in 2012.

Universal Credit is essentially a monthly payment that you receive when you are not working or when you are working and on a low income.

How to Contact Universal Credit Helpline

Universal Credit have a customer service line, which is operational from 8:30AM to 6PM from Monday to Friday. It is closed on Saturdays and Sundays, and closed on public and bank holidays.

Things to Remember When You Call Universal Credit Contact Number

  • When you call, if you are on existing benefits which have been replaced by Universal Credit, make sure you have information and details of the payments or benefits you were receiving. As well as this, you may need identity documents and details of yours and your partner’s current employment situation and income.
  • Before calling the Universal Credit number, if you’ve registered for Universal Credit, remember that there is a one calendar month assessment period before you can receive your payment, so if you feel that your payment is late or hasn’t arrived, remember to factor this, plus a 7 day waiting period, into your calculations before contacting the Universal Credit phone number.

FAQ

When will I receive my Universal Credit payment?

Once you make a claim, there is a 7 day waiting period. The 7th day after you make your claim is the date that you’ll receive your UC payment, which is paid in arrears. However, you will also be subject to a one month assessment period. This means that your first payment will come after 7 days, plus one calendar month. It can take up to six weeks to receive your first UC payment.

When does the seven day waiting period not apply?

There are a number of circumstances when this doesn’t apply, including if you’re terminally ill, ‘vulnerable’ (e.g. a victim of domestic abuse) or moving on to Universal Credit from a different benefit that is being retired.

For other circumstances, either look online or you can contact Universal Credit customer service line if you have unique circumstances to discuss.

How much is a universal credit payment?

This depends on several different factors. There is a ‘standard’ allowance for Universal Credit, but then this alters depending on other elements, such as whether you have dependents, are a carer, or have disabled children or a disabled adult whom you look after.

Universal credit is also altered depending on how much you have in savings, and how much money you are earning if you are currently working. Above the earnings allowance, your payment will decrease by a certain amount for each £1 you earn.

Likewise, if you have savings above a certain limit, your UC payment will alter. At the upper bounds, if you have savings of over £16,000, you will not be eligible for any form of universal credit.

To find out more about Universal Credit, and what you are entitled to depending on your situation, you can either go online to the Universal Credit website, or call the Universal Credit telephone number with any enquiries that you can’t find an answer to.

What is ‘Universal Credit’?

‘Universal Credit’ is a financial benefit issued by the government that replaces a number of other benefits, such as Child Tax Credit, Housing Benefit, Income-Based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income-Related Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support and Working Tax Credit. Universal Credit is generally available to individuals who are out of work or on a particularly low income.

Who is eligible for Universal Credit?

To be eligible for Universal Credit, you must either be a couple or family living in a specific area of the country, or a single individual living in England, Wales or Scotland. A list of the living areas where couples and families may be able to claim Universal Credit is available on the ‘Job Centre Areas Where Couples and Families Can Claim Universal Credit’ page on the government website.

Furthermore, you should be over the age of 18 and under the official State Pension age. You should not have more than £16,000 in savings, and you should not be in training or full-time education. Contact Universal Credit if you have specific queries about your situation.

Can I claim Universal Credit without my savings being taken into account?

No. Universal Credit claims take into account both your own savings and income, and the savings and income of your partner.

You may be able to claim benefits without your savings being taken into account by applying for ‘New Style Jobseeker’s Allowance’ or ‘New Style Employment and Support Allowance’ instead.

Can I claim Universal Credit if I have children?

Yes. If you live in a Universal Credit Area and you have one or two children, you can apply for Universal Credit. However, if you have at least three children and you haven’t applied for Universal Credit before, you may be required to apply for Child Tax Credit instead.

If you have received Universal Credit in the last few months but the payments have stopped, you may be able to claim Universal Credit irregardless of how many children you have.

Can I claim Universal Credit if I have a condition or disability that affects my ability to work?

Possibly. To find out if you are eligible for Universal Credit, you may need to take a ‘Work Capability Assessment’. You should be informed of how to arrange the assessment by letter after you apply for Universal Credit.

How much Universal Credit will I get?

The amount of money you receive depends on your age, relationship status, the number of children you have, and if you have any disabilities or illnesses. Currently, the Universal Credit ‘Standard Allowance’ amount will be different for; single individuals under the age of 25, single individuals aged 25 or over, couples under the age of 25, and couples with at least one partner aged 25 or over.

You may also be eligible for the Universal Credit ‘Extra Monthly Amount’ if you have children, you need help with childcare costs, you are disabled, your child is disabled, or you help care for a disabled person.

Find out the amount of money you could receive by using an online ‘Benefits Calculator’.

How can I claim Universal Credit?

You can claim Universal Credit online by using the ‘Apply for Universal Credit’ form on the government website. If you need any help with the application process or you need to request an accessible application format, such as large print or audio CD, to contact the team call Universal Credit on the phone.

What happens after my Universal Credit claim is accepted?

If your Universal Credit claim is accepted, you may be invited to an interview at a Jobcentre Plus office. You may also be asked to agree to a number of certain tasks, known as a ‘Claimant Commitment’.

If you do not attend the interview or do not fulfil the Claimant Commitment tasks, you may not receive Universal Credit or your allowance could be stopped.

What happens if my Universal Credit claim is rejected?

If your Universal Credit claim is rejected or you do not agree with the amount of Universal Credit you have been awarded, you should be able to appeal the decision by requesting ‘Mandatory Reconsideration’.

Keep in mind, you may need to make this request within a certain amount of time of your claim being rejected/decided.

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