You are currently in the en section of the site.

No thank you, please close this banner.

Last updated:
10/04/2018

Can I apply for Universal Credit?

What if I care for someone or have children?

  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

Caring for someone

You can get the carer element of Universal Credit (UC) if you care for someone who needs a lot of support – you must care for him or her for 35 hours or more a week and the person you care for must also be getting:

Carer element

If someone has more than one carer, only one of them can get the carer element and they can get up to £156.45 a month.

If you are a couple and both of you care for two or more different people, you could both get an additional carer element, but you can’t get the carer element, Limited Capability for Work (LCW) and Limited Capability for Work Related Activity (LCWRA) elements at the same time. If you are entitled to both, you will get whichever is more.

What if I have children?

You can get the child element if you have children, which has two rates:

  • A higher rate for the child, and
  • A lower rate for any other children.

For children born after 6 April 2017, the higher rate will not be available anymore. You will get the lower rate for up to two children in your family, but there are some exceptions to this and you should speak to a welfare adviser if you need more information.

First child - £277.08

Other children - £231.67

Disabled children

You can get money for each disabled child or qualifying young person you are responsible for. This is called the disabled child element.

You can get money for each disabled child or qualifying young person you are responsible for. This is called the disabled child element

You will get the higher rate of £383.86 each month if your child is entitled to:

You will also get this amount if you care for a blind child.

If your child gets any other rate of DLA or PIP, you will get £126.11 each month.

Childcare costs

If you are in paid work, you may be able to get help with up to 85% of your childcare costs, with the maximum amounts being:

  • One child – up to £646.35 each month
  • Two or more children – up to £1,108.04 each month

There are some rules around getting this element:

  • The childcare costs must be for a child under 16 years old, or before 1st September following their 16th birthday,
  • The childcare must help you to start working or stay working,
  • You must have a paid job or be about to start a paid job before the start of the next UC assessment period,
  • If you are a couple, your partner must also be:
    • In paid work or have a limited capability for work, or
    • Be a full-time carer or be away from your home for a short time.
You will only get help with childcare from a registered childminder, school or local authority on school premises out of school hours

You will only get help with childcare from a registered childminder, school or local authority on school premises out of school hours. You cannot claim this element to pay family or friends to mind your child unless they are registered. 

You must tell the DWP how much your childcare costs are every month.

Share this article

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
x

Is this article helpful to you?

Was this article helpful to you?

×

Please tell us more

For urgent help, please see Help & contacts