Get an advance on your first payment

If you need help to pay your bills or cover other costs while you wait for your first Universal Credit payment, you can apply to get an advance.

The most you can get as an advance is the amount of your first estimated payment.

How to apply

You can apply for an advance payment in your online account or through your Jobcentre Plus work coach.

You’ll need to:

  • explain why you need an advance
  • verify your identity (you do this online when you submit your Universal Credit claim or at your first Jobcentre Plus interview)
  • provide bank account details for the advance (talk to your work coach if you cannot open an account)

You’ll usually find out the same day if you can get an advance.

If you need help

Call the Universal Credit helpline if you need help applying for an advance payment.

Universal Credit full service helpline
Telephone: 0800 328 5644
Textphone: 0800 328 1344
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
Find out about call charges

How you pay back your advance

You start paying it back out of your first payment.

You can choose how many months you pay the advance back over. You must pay it back within 12 months. You do not pay interest on it - the total amount you pay back is the same.

Example Your first estimated payment is £251.77 and you get £251.77 as an advance.

You choose to pay back your advance over 12 months, which is £20.98 per month. You’ll get £230.79 on your first payment date - this is your first payment minus the bit you’re repaying (£251.77 minus £20.98).

Read more about getting a Universal Credit advance.