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Last updated:
05/12/2017

Can I apply for Universal Credit?

What if I am working or studying?

  1. Overview
  2. What is Universal Credit?
  3. How much can I get?
  4. What if I am working or studying?
  5. What if I care for someone or have children?
  6. What about my housing costs?
  7. How will income, savings and property affect my Universal Credit?
  8. Will the Benefit Cap affect me?
  9. How will I get my Universal Credit payments?
  10. What is the claimant commitment?
  11. Can I appeal if I disagree with a decision?
  12. When will I have to claim?
  13. Next steps

Work

You can still claim Universal Credit (UC) if you work, but how much you earn may reduce the amount of UC you get. 

You can still claim Universal Credit (UC) if you work, but how much you earn may reduce the amount of UC you get.

You may pay tax using Pay As You Earn (PAYE); in this case, Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will tell the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) how much you earn.

If you are self-employed, you must tell the DWP how much you earn every month. You may earn different amounts every week or month and in which case, the DWP will assess your income by saying you will earn at least a certain amount every month. This is called the minimum income floor and your minimum income floor is based on national minimum wage, based on a 35-hour week. Based on this you will have a weekly minimum floor income of:

  • £227.05 if you are aged 21 and over,
  • £178.05 if you are 18-20, or
  • £132.65 if you are under 18.

If you are setting up a new business, the DWP will use your actual earnings in the first 12 months to help you increase your income.

Studying

You cannot usually claim UC if you are a full-time student studying for:

  • A degree,
  • A postgraduate degree,
  • A diploma of higher education,
  • A higher national diploma, and
  • Any other qualification that is above advanced GNVQ or A level standard.

You can claim UC when you are studying if:

  • You have a child, or
  • You get Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independence Payment at any rate for any component, and
  • Have limited capability for work.

If you are studying part-time and meet the conditions that are set out in your claimant commitment, you can claim UC.

 

 

Within this subject

  1. Overview
  2. What is Universal Credit?
  3. How much can I get?
  4. What if I am working or studying?
  5. What if I care for someone or have children?
  6. What about my housing costs?
  7. How will income, savings and property affect my Universal Credit?
  8. Will the Benefit Cap affect me?
  9. How will I get my Universal Credit payments?
  10. What is the claimant commitment?
  11. Can I appeal if I disagree with a decision?
  12. When will I have to claim?
  13. Next steps

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