Universal Credit - How to Claim - Completing your online claim form

This guide will walk you though making a Universal Credit claim

Last reviewed 11 July 2023

Completing your online claim form

You will see a page with a list of 'to-dos'. You can do these in any order but it is important to check the information you put on each screen before pressing 'continue'.

If you think you have made a mistake when you entered your information, you will have a chance later on to go back and correct it. However, you can’t do this until you have completed all sections of the claim. You might find it helpful to use a pen and paper to make a note of any questions you want to go back to.

Please read the sections below

You will need information ready about how much rent you pay and how much any service charges are. If you don’t know this, you should ask your landlord.

Make sure you put down the full amount of rent, not any top up you pay, and not any amount you pay to cover arrears.

If you share your home with flatmates or housemates, you should put the total amount of rent you all pay, not your share of the rent.

You will also be asked what kind of tenancy you have. If you aren’t sure whether you rent from a council, a housing association or a private landlord, you should ask your landlord. You will also need to provide contact details for your landlord. If you rent from a private landlord, the jobcentre won’t usually contact your landlord about your Universal Credit application.

If you own your own home and pay service charges or ground rent, you should say so on the form. After you start your claim, you will be asked to provide details of the service charges and evidence that you have to pay them.

If you have children and you want to get money in your Universal Credit for their needs, you might be asked for your Child Benefit reference numbers. You can find these on letters about your Child Benefit. You can claim Universal Credit help for your children even if you do not get Child Benefit.

If you have childcare costs, you will need information about how much you pay and details of your childcare provider.

If you have children and you live with a partner, you will be asked which of you is the primary carer for the children. This will have an impact on your claimant commitments (what you have to do to get your Universal Credit) and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) expects that you should keep the same primary carer instead of swapping roles a lot.

You can choose an option that neither of you is the primary carer for your child but this can affect your benefits. If it isn’t obvious which of you is the primary carer for your child, you should speak to an adviser.

If you are working and are an employee, you will need information about your income before tax. You can find this on your payslips.

If your income varies from month to month, it is fine to put an estimate. Your Universal Credit is worked out each month off the actual earnings you received in that month.

If you are self-employed, you will need information about your profits which you should be able to work out from the accounts you keep for your work.

If you have savings or other income, you will need to give information about them.

You will be asked if you are caring for someone with a health condition or disability. If you are, you will be asked what disability benefits the person you care for gets and how many hours you spend caring for them each week.

The information you enter here allows the DWP to work out whether you are entitled to extra money in your Universal Credit as a carer. Getting this extra money might affect the benefits of the person you care for. If you want to get advice about the impact of this, you should speak to an adviser or read our information on the Severe Disability Premium.

You will be asked if you have any illnesses or disabilities. If you say that you do, you will be asked to input the names of your conditions. You will then be asked whether you have been told by a doctor that you might have less than 6 months to live. The reason you are asked this is that people with less than 6 months to live are subject to different rules.

Next, you will be asked whether any of your conditions restrict your ability to work or look for work. Even if you are in work, you might have a condition that restricts your ability to work. If your health conditions make it harder for you to work or to look for work, you should answer yes to this question.

You will be asked for the details of the bank account you want your Universal Credit to be paid into. Make sure you check that you have entered the right details.

Everyone who claims Universal Credit will have to agree to a claimant commitment. As part of submitting your online claim, you will have to agree to a commitment. You will work out in detail with your work coach what you will have to do under that commitment. Everyone has to agree to a commitment at this stage, even if they are ill or cannot work.


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