Can I get an Advance Payment?

New Claim Advance

If you are making a new claim for Universal Credit and are going to find it difficult to wait until you receive your first payment, then you could receive a New Claim Advance.
See Getting paid for more information about when you will receive your first payment.

An Advance Payment is an interest free ‘advance’ of your future UC payments and will need to be paid back.

The most you can get as a New Claim Advance is the amount of your first payment (the DWP will work out how much this is likely to be). But you can take less – you do not have to accept what the DWP offer you.

Think carefully about how much you need now and the impact paying the Advance back will have on your future budget, see the table below.

You will have to verify your ID before you can get a New Claim Advance.

You should find out the same day whether you are able to get one or not, and if you are, you should receive the payment within 2/3 days – it will be paid directly into the account you choose for your Universal Credit payments.

How do I pay it back?

Rather than having to pay it back in one lump sum, you will pay it back over 24 months* – the DWP will make deductions out of your on-going Universal Credit payments.
* was previously 12 months.

You start paying it back out of your first Universal Credit payment.

Amount BorrowedIf paid back
You’ll be told how much the monthly deductions will be when you apply.
You can ask to delay repayments for up to 3 months if you can’t afford them.
If you stop claiming Universal Credit, you will still have to repay

IMPORTANT: Think carefully about how much you need – because your future Universal Credit payments will be reduced to pay it back.

REMEMBER: There may be other deductions taken out of your Universal Credit award reducing your payment further – click here.

MAKE SURE: You will be able to pay your other bills and rent – think about your budget and what you will have to cut back on to be able to pay all your bills and buy the essentials that you need.

How do I apply for one?

You should be able to apply online via your UC account. You will need to follow the instructions online and complete a small application.

If not, your Work Coach can help you apply, or you can ring the UC Helpline on: 0800 328 5644 and ask for an Advance Payment.

The DWP will want to know why you need an Advance Payment.

Precious is making a new claim for Universal Credit. She has just separated from her partner and needs help paying her rent.
She works and gets paid weekly, but this will not be enough to cover all her bills until she gets her first Universal Credit payment in just under 5 weeks time. So she logs into her online UC account and applies for an Advance Payment. She decides not to go for the full amount offered as she’s worried how she’ll cope with a large deduction being made from her UC payment. She requests £200 and to pay this back over a 24 month period. Her request is accepted, the £200 is paid directly into her bank account and her first Universal Credit payment is reduced by £8.33 – being the first repayment. She’s glad she only went for a low Advance because the DWP have taken another deduction out of her Universal Credit award for a Social Fund loan that she’d totally forgotten about and was still outstanding from 5 years ago.