4. How to claim

Claim JSA online

You can claim Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) online.

Rapid reclaims

You can make a ‘rapid reclaim’ if you’ve had JSA in the last 182 days (approximately 6 months). Reclaims can be made online and should take about 10 minutes.

You will still have to attend an interview at a Jobcentre to get JSA.

Claim JSA by phone

Contact Jobcentre Plus if you can’t apply online.

Jobcentre Plus
Telephone: 0800 055 6688
Welsh language: 0800 012 1888
Textphone: 0800 023 4888
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
Find out about call charges

What you need to know

JSA interview

To complete your claim you must go to an interview at your local Jobcentre. If you don’t, you won’t get any JSA. If you apply online, you’ll get a text or phone call within 2 working days to arrange this.

At the interview you have to agree things like:

  • what steps you can take to find work - eg improving your skills
  • how you can improve your chances of getting a job - eg get help on writing a CV, preparing for interviews, looking for work

This is called a ‘Jobseeker’s Agreement’. You can take someone with you to a JSA interview.

Your JSA may be stopped if you don’t follow your agreement and can’t give a good reason.

You may have to sign a ‘Claimant Commitment’ instead if you live in a certain area and make a new claim for JSA.

JSA joint claims

You must make a joint claim with your partner if all the following apply:

  • you both want to claim JSA
  • both of you are 18 or over
  • you’re both under state pension age
  • neither of you are responsible for a child

Contact Jobcentre Plus if you’re not sure about making a joint claim.

If you live in Northern Ireland, contact your local Social Security or Jobs and Benefits Office.

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