How you make a claim for Universal Credit
Universal Credit is a secure digital service and you will make your claim online. You will use your online account to provide information, including what you have done to look or prepare for work.
Important information if you have received a Migration Notice letter
If you have received a Migration Notice letter telling you your benefit or tax credits is ending, note that the eligibility rules for Universal Credit may be different from your existing benefit or tax credits.
You may lose access to some benefits if you don’t claim Universal Credit.
You can seek independent advice before making a claim to Universal Credit to make sure this is the best decision for you, by contacting Advice NI
Universal Credit online account
To make a claim you must first create a secure Universal Credit online account.
You can create your Universal Credit online account at Universal Credit online.
You must send your claim within 28 days of creating your account. If you don’t send your claim within 28 days, you will need to create a new account. You will get your first payment about five weeks after you send your claim.
Once you have created your Universal Credit account you can use it to find information about your claim, to contact Universal Credit and to provide information about your claim. Messages to your online account will be answered as soon as possible during business hours.
What you need to claim Universal Credit
- your email address
- details of the bank or building society account you want your Universal Credit paid into
- documents to confirm your identity (for example, a UK driving licence or a household bill)
- details of any income from work, and any other income (for example, from an insurance policy)
- details of your savings, investments and assets
- details of any other benefits you’re getting
- details of your housing costs (including any service charges, but not rates) and your landlord’s details, if you have one
- details of the people who live in your home
The Universal Credit Personal Planner will tell you what you need to do to prepare for claiming Universal Credit.
If you need help with your claim, you can contact Universal Credit through your Universal Credit online account, speak to your Work Coach in your local Jobs & Benefits office or phone the Universal Credit Service Centre.
Information videos can help explain the key stages in claiming Universal Credit.
Digital Support in your local Jobs & Benefits office
If you don’t have access to the internet or a digital device (for example a computer, laptop, tablet or smart phone) or if you need help to get online, your local Jobs & Benefits office can help.
Contact your local office on 0300 200 7822 to arrange an appointment. You will be able to access a digital device and get support with your digital skills from a member of staff who can help you make or maintain your Universal Credit claim.
If you arrive without an appointment you may still be able to use our digital devices if one is available.
If you consider moving to Universal Credit from another benefit
When you claim Universal Credit, any benefits or tax credits it replaces will stop. If you are considering a move to Universal Credit from another benefit, you can check your eligibility.
If you receive a Migration Notice letter, you have three months to make a claim to Universal Credit before your current benefit or tax credits payments end.
Your benefit or tax credits will end even if you do not claim Universal Credit.
You can seek independent advice before making a claim for Universal Credit to make sure this is the best decision for you by contacting Advice NI.
You can also use a benefit calculator to check how much you may get.