TIP: If you are struggling to make a claim for Universal Credit, make sure you get help straight away. For each day that you delay submitting your claim, you may lose a day’s entitlement. There are lots of places where you can get help – see below.
If you need help
If you have to make a claim for Universal Credit, then any delay in making the claim could mean that you will miss out on money that you are entitled to.
So if you need help with your application, ask straight away – the sooner you apply for Universal Credit, the sooner you’ll get your first payment.
If you need help making your claim you can:
- Contact your local Job Centre and ask for a list of places where you can get help.
- Call the Universal Credit Helpline: 0800 328 5644. If the DWP accept that you need help from them to make your claim, the date of the phone call should be accepted as your date of claim.
- Get help from the Citizens Advice ‘Help to Claim’ service. Note: your claim is not made until it is actually submitted.
- The DWP may agree to a home visit in certain situations.
I’m not going to be able to make or manage my claim online
If you have complex needs, a severe disability or other exceptional circumstances that will make it impossible to make and manage your claim online, then ask the DWP to allow you to have a non-digital telephone claim instead.
This is where you make and manage the claim on the phone and can receive written notifications / messages.
Call the Helpline: 0800 328 5644 and explain your difficulties.
Your Work Coach may suggest that you move over to the online service, but if you do not feel ready for that then explain why.
Shahid lives with his parents. He has been attending his local college but his course is coming to an end. He will then need to claim benefits in his own right. Shadid has learning difficulties and so will not be able to make and maintain an online Universal Credit claim without help. His parents have no experience themselves with using a computer. His sister (who lives locally) calls the UC Helpline and explains the situation. The adviser agrees that it would be best for Shahid to have an offline claim. She helps him make the claim over the phone and explains that he will receive written notifications about his award and can call the UC Helpline to report any changes in his circumstances or ask any questions about his award as he will not have access to an online account.