What many who start claiming this benefit don’t know is that it is possible to get an advance of your first Universal Credit payment.
Here, in this guide to Universal Credit and advance payments, we explain how and why you might want to ask to get your money early.
Why should you apply for an advance payment of Universal Credit?
Once you apply for Universal Credit, the process to be approved and to then start receiving your monthly payments – or payments every two weeks in Scotland – may take some time, at least five weeks.
So, you should ask for an advance payment if you really think you won’t have enough money to live on between the application and the date when you would collect your first Universal Credit payment.
How do you apply for an advance payment of Universal Credit?
In terms of the process for applying for an advance payment of Universal Credit, it’s quite simple. You simply ask your work coach at your first Universal Credit interview, apply through your online account or call the Universal Credit helpline.
You’ll usually find out straight away whether you can receive an advance payment or not.
Asking for an advance payment is quite common and nothing to be ashamed about, so you should consider it if you think you’ll need it.
But, it must be kept in mind that the advance payment is a loan and that it will mean you’ll receive less money in future payments.
You need to pay back the advance payment money over time, although there is no interest involved, which is a positive.