January 20, 2022, 21:20

    Universal Credit claimants can get an emergency £812 if they’re struggling in January

    Universal Credit claimants can get an emergency £812 if they’re struggling in January

    Universal Credit claimants who are struggling after Christmas can apply for help worth up to £812.

    The support is known as a Budgeting Advance and can be used to go toward emergency household costs.

    You may also be eligible to receive the payment if you need financial help getting a job or staying in work, or for funeral costs.

    But as a Budgeting Advance is technically a loan, you will need to pay it back through your future Universal Credit payments.

    You don’t pay any interest though, unlike expensive payday loans and other forms of borrowing which can be hard to keep on top of.

    We explain how a Budgeting Advance works, who is eligible and how you apply below.

    How much can I borrow through a Budgeting Advance?

    Families might be struggling after Christmas going into January
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    Image:
    Geography Photos/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

    The smallest amount you can borrow is £100 and the most is £812 if you have children.

    You can get up to:

    • £348 if you’re single

    • £464 if you’re part of a couple

    • £812 if you have children

    How much you can get depends on whether you can pay the loan back and if you have any savings over £1,000.

    The amount you can borrow is reduced by £1 for every £1 you have in savings over the £1,000 threshold.

    Who is eligible for a Budgeting Advance?

    You have to meet certain criteria to get a Budgeting Advance – so not everyone on Universal Credit will be accepted for one.

    To be eligible for the financial help, you must have been getting one of the following benefits for six months or more:

    • Universal Credit
    • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
    • Income Support
    • Income- related Jobseeker’s Allowance
    • State Pension Credit

    The only time this won’t apply is if you need the money to help you start a new job or keep an existing job.

    You must also have earned less than £2,600 (£3,600 jointly for couples) in the past six months and have paid off any previous Budgeting Advances.

    How do I repay a Budgeting Advance?

    You’ll need to repay your Budgeting Advance through your future Universal Credit repayments – but as we mentioned above, you won’t pay interest on top.

    The first deduction is made on the day you get your next payment after being accepted for the loan and the full amount must be repaid within 12 months.

    If you stop claiming Universal Credit, you’ll still need to repay your Budgeting Advance.

    Payments will either need to come out from your wages, if you’re now in work, or from other benefits you may be getting.

    If you don’t make payment arrangements, the DWP can contact your employer to recover what you owe.

    The DWP can also contact a debt collection agency to collect any outstanding payments – so keep this in mind before applying for a loan.

    How do I apply for a Budgeting Advance?

    If you’re struggling and in need of a Budgeting Advance, you’ll need to apply through your Jobcentre Plus work coach.

    They should explain how much you can borrow and how much you’ll need to repay each month.

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    Sourse: mirror.co.uk

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