Could Universal Credit be for you?

Universal Credit is for people who are out of work or on a low income. It makes it easier to take any job opportunities, because it could:

  • top up your wages
  • take the hassle out of starting short-term or part-time work
  • pay for up to 85% of your childcare
  • give you expert work coach support to help you find, start and stay in work

You may be able to claim it even if you’re already working. Read the guidance on eligibility to find out whether you might be able to receive Universal Credit. You can use our Benefits Checker tool to get a quick idea of what financial support you may be able to claim. It will ask you a few questions and suggest what help you are most likely to be eligible for.

Moving to Universal Credit from other benefits 

Many people apply for Universal Credit after they’ve had a change of circumstances, such as losing their job or a change in their situation at home. But if you’re already receiving other benefits and tax credits, it might be worth considering whether claiming Universal Credit instead would be better for you.

Have a look at all the different ways in which Universal Credit could help you, and use a benefits calculator to get an understanding of what support may be available and how much you might get.

If you’re in this situation, it’s important to make sure you will be able to get Universal Credit before you apply for it. If you currently receive other benefits or tax credits and submit a claim for Universal Credit, those other benefits and tax credits will end immediately. If your benefit or tax credit award ends it cannot be re-opened, and it will not be possible to make a new benefit or tax credit claim in the future, even if your Universal Credit application is unsuccessful.

Read more about what you need to know if you currently receive tax credits and see the Citizens Advice guide to moving to Universal Credit from other benefits.

Applying for Universal Credit

Most people will make their Universal Credit claim online, and support is available if you need a little help. If you are unable to make your application online, get additional advice through Help to Claim or the Universal Credit helpline. Find out more about anything to do with Universal Credit by visiting Understanding Universal Credit.