Citizens Advice have launched a new service to help people make a Universal Credit claim, and receive their first full payment on time.
The Help to Claim service can provide independent, tailored advice on how to apply for Universal Credit as well as practical support through the early stages of your claim, from the online application, through to support with your application before your first full payment.
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.
The service is free, independent, confidential and impartial provided by trained advisers from Citizens Advice.
You can access the service through Citizens Advice's free phone line and web chat from 8am - 6pm Monday to Friday.
- Telephone - 0800 144 8 144
- Webchat - https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/helptoclaim
If a face-to-face appointment is needed, you will be referred to Citizens Advice Cheshire West who will arrange an appointment at your nearest Citizens Advice office.
Alternatively, you can visit your local office in Cheshire West and Chester during normal opening hours. The Winsford, Northwich and Chester offices are open Monday to Friday 10am - 4pm for drop-in advice and appointments; the Ellesmere Port office is open from 10am - 2pm for drop-in advice and 2pm - 4pm for appointments.
If you experience any difficulties after submitting your application or once you are in receipt of Universal Credit, please do not hesitate to contact me by either e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) or telephone (01606 861 300) as I am always happy to take up issues with the Department of Work and Pensions on your behalf.