Universal Credit

Universal Credit (UC) is a new working-age benefit being introduced gradually across the country as part of the government’s welfare reforms if you’re on a low income or out of work. Universal Credit is now available across the Borough. When you make your claim online you will be advised which Job Centre you’ll need to visit but most residents of the Borough will have their application dealt with at either Beeston or Heanor Job Centre.

Universal Credit replaces:

  • Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Housing Benefit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income Support

Find out more about Universal Credit:

How is Universal Credit different?

There are several key differences between UC and the existing benefits listed above:

  • UC is paid monthly in one payment
  • The application is made and managed online
  • Claimants will have to sign a claimant commitment and meet the terms of this to receive their payments
  • UC will include payment towards housing costs and the claimant will have to arrange for this to be paid to their landlord

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How to claim

Make your claim online (Opens in a New Window)

If you haven't got your own pc, then try to use a computer belonging to a friend or member of your family. Many public libraries have computers that you can use or if you’re unsure how to use a computer then Citizens Advice can help you.

Before making a claim, you need to gather the following information and have it ready:

  • your postcode
  • your National Insurance number
  • details of the bank, building society or Post Office account you want Universal Credit paid into
  • your rent agreement (if you have one)
  • details of your savings or other capital
  • details of any income that's not from work (e.g. from an insurance plan)
  • details of any other benefits you're getting
  • You might also need these details for people who live in your home, e.g. your partner.

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What to do once you have made a claim for Universal Credit

  1. Contact the Rents Team at Broxtowe or your landlord to advise them that you have made a claim and discuss how you will be making payments for your rent
  2. Make a claim for council tax support – see below for more info
  3. Make a claim for Discretionary Housing Payments if you are affected by the benefit cap or under occupancy charges
  4. Set up Direct Debits to pay your important bills (rent, council tax, fuel and water) on the day that your UC is paid to help with budgeting
  5. Prepare a budget to help you manage the change from fortnightly to monthly payments. Why not try using an online budget planner? (Opens in a New Window) 
  6. Book an appointment with Citizens Advice to discuss any debts you may have and how to manage these effectively
  7. Respond to any requests for information from the DWP or Job Centre as quickly as possible so that your claim is not delayed
  8. Request an advance payment via the Job Centre to cover the period whilst your claim is being assessed (please be aware that you will have to pay this back and the DWP will deduct an amount each month from your UC payment to cover this)

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Council Tax Support Claimants

Help with council tax is not included in your UC payment. You must apply for council tax support directly through our benefits service once you have applied for UC. If you don't apply for your council tax support at this time, you may not receive your maximum entitlement.

Make an Application for Council Tax Support (Opens in a New Window)

Find out more about Council Tax Support

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Discretionary Housing Payments

If you are entitled to the Housing Element of UC (which replaces Housing Benefit) then you may qualify for a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) if you are affected by the benefit cap, under occupancy charge or have a shortfall to make up and are experiencing financial hardship.

Complete the application form (.pdf) (270KB) (Opens in a New Window) and send to the Council Offices. If you need help completing the application form or need a form sending to you, please contact our Customer Services team or visit your local Citizens Advice. (Opens in a New Window)

Find out more about Discretionary Housing Payments

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Where can I get help and advice?

If you are struggling with the changes to your payments, finding it difficult to make ends meet or having a problem with your claim there are plenty of people who can help. The important thing is not to delay in making contact and getting the advice you need.

  • Citizens Advice – Broxtowe Borough Council works closely with Citizens Advice to provide support to residents of the borough. For more information about their opening times and contact details please visit the Citizens Advice webpage.
  • Broxtowe’s Financial Inclusion Officer - Broxtowe employs a financial inclusion officer who can help you with budgeting, benefits and accessing funding. This service is available to Broxtowe’s tenants only. For more information or to arrange an appointment please call the Customer Services Team
  • If you are a Broxtowe Borough Council tenant and need advice about your rent, or to set up a payment plan please contact the Housing Income Team at housingincome@broxtowe.gov.uk or 0115 917 3658

For more information about Universal Credit please visit the Government's Universal Credit pages. (Opens in a New Window)

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