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Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) - How do I claim Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)?

Employment and Support Allowance is money for people who have limited capability for work because of their sickness or disability but do not get Statutory Sick Pay. There are two types: income-related Employment and Support Allowance and contributory Employment and Support Allowance

How do I claim Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)?

In England, Scotland or Wales

Phone Jobcentre Plus:
Telephone: 0800 055 6688
Textphone: 0800 023 4888
Welsh language line: 0800 012 1888

Or download a claim form from the Gov.UK website (link opens in a new window)

In Northern Ireland

Telephone: 0800 085 6318
Textphone: 0800 328 3419

Or download a claim form from the NI Direct website (link opens in a new window)

What documents will I need to claim Employment and Support Allowance?

You should give your national insurance number. If you do not have a national insurance number, send in the claim form anyway to save delays. You may also be asked for proof of your identity such as a birth certificate, passport or driving licence.

When will my Employment and Support Allowance claim begin?

Employment and Support Allowance can be backdated for up to three months before the date of claim if you would have been entitled to it earlier, for example, if you had a health condition that meant you were unable to work. You will be asked to provide a medical certificate to show this. It does not matter why your claim is late. Request backdating when you make your claim.

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