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How to prepare for Universal Credit

Some things that you will need to do before you make your UC claim

You can prepare for Universal Credit by making sure you: 

  • Have an email account
  • Have a bank or credit union account
  • Can access the internet to make your claim

You can use the Universal Credit Personal Planner (Opens new window) to get a personal statement to find out what changes you may need to make to get ready for Universal Credit. 

Getting an email account

You will need an email account so that you can access notifications from your Jobcentre Plus Work Coach. An email account is preferred to a mobile number as your mobile number is more likely to change and you will then not be able to receive notifications. If you do not act on the notifications from your Work Coach your UC payments may stop. There are a variety of email providers on the internet.  Yahoo Mail and Google Mail are some free ones you could try.

Using a bank or other account

On-going Universal Credit can only be paid into a bank, building society, credit union or similar type of account in your name. If you have difficulties opening a standard bank account you should be able to open a icon basic bank account [139Kb] instead. If you need to open a bank or Credit Union account, use our bank map to find a branch that is near to where you live.  If you do not have a bank account but you need to make a claim for Universal Credit do not delay making your claim. You will need to open a bank account as soon as your claim is made and provide your bank details to your Work Coach as soon as possible to prevent delays in payment.

Please note that Universal Credit Advance (the loan to tide you over until your first UC payment) can be paid into a friend or relative's account.

If you need help to get online

You may be able to apply online at Perth and Blairgowrie Jobcentre Plus offices.

You can go online at libraries throughout Perth & Kinross, however you may need to book a computer before you go.

If you need assistance to make a claim online, Perth Citizen's Advice Bureau has a "Benefits Advice in Libraries" project where an advisor can help you to make your claim online.

For a step by step overview of Universal Credit, view the DWP's short video:

Contact details

Welfare Rights Team

Pullar House, 35 Kinnoull Street, Perth, PH1 5GD
Tel 01738 476900 (Option 1)