You may be able to get an advance on your first benefit payment if you’re in urgent financial need. This is called a ‘short term benefit advance’.
You can apply if you’ve recently applied for:
- Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
- Income Support
- Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
- Carer’s Allowance
- Pension Credit
- State Pension
You’ll be told when you’ll be paid, but it’s usually on the same day or the next working day. It will be paid into your bank or post office account.
How much money you get will depend on your circumstances.
How to apply
Call the right phone number for the benefit you’re claiming. You must tell the adviser about your circumstances and how much you think you need to borrow.
Find out about call charges.
If you can’t use the phone
You can ask to use the phone in your local Jobcentre Plus if you can’t afford to make a phone call.
Ask a Jobcentre Plus adviser to assess you and apply on your behalf if you’re unable to speak on the phone.
Getting another advance
You can ask for another advance straight after receiving one (or being turned down) but only if you can show that your circumstances have changed, for example you need more than you previously thought.
Paying it back
The adviser will tell you how to pay back the advance. Usually a little will be taken from your benefit each week until it’s paid back.
If you’re not happy with a decision
You can ask for a decision to be reconsidered if you’re not happy with it. Say this when you’re told the decision.