New role for Citizens Advice Bureau in Universal Credit.

Announcement from Citizens Advice Bureau.

Following the announcement in October 2018 that Citizens Advice will provide a new service to help your constituents make a Universal Credit claim, I’m getting in touch to let you know that as of today the service is live across Great Britain.

Our new Help to Claim service offers independent, tailored and practical support to help people make a Universal Credit claim, and receive their first full payment on time. It is available through our free phone line, web chat and local Citizens Advice services. I have included more details about how your constituents can access the service below. Your local Citizens Advice can also provide more details about the specific options available to your constituents, which might include face-to-face advice through outreach clinics, for example in libraries or Jobcentres.

At Citizens Advice we’ve helped over 230,000 people across England and Wales with issues related to Universal Credit since rollout began. The biggest reason people come to us for help is regarding their initial claim.

Help to Claim can provide people with advice on how to apply for Universal Credit and support them through the application process. The support provided will vary depending on individual need, but might include things such as: helping someone gather evidence of their housing or childcare costs; ensuring people know that Alternative Payment Arrangements are available; and offering advice on what to expect at a Jobcentre appointment and how to prepare for it.

Our local offices have been working closely with Jobcentres, local authorities and other local organisations in preparation for providing the service. This close working relationship will continue throughout the operation of the service.

Ways to access the service

Support is available through our free phone line and web chat from 8am - 6pm Monday to Friday.

For locations and timings of face-to-face advice in your area please contact your local office.