Benefits and tax credits
You might be able to increase your income by claiming benefits or tax credits. What you're entitled to will depend on your circumstances - for example, whether or not you work, have children, or get a pension.
If you're struggling to make sense of all the information out there, the unclaimed benefit campaign can help you work out what benefits you're entitled to. You can call 01642 802303 to make an appointment.
Unclaimed benefits campaign
The unclaimed benefits campaign can help you find out whether you're getting all of the benefits you're entitled to.
The service is appointment only. Call 01642 802303 to make an appointment. Sessions take place on:
- Monday - 9am to 4:30pm - Breckon Hill Community Centre, Breckon Hill Road, Middlesbrough, TS4 2DS
- Monday - 9am to 1:30pm - Live Well Centre, Dundas Arcade, Middlesbrough, TS1 1HR
- Tuesday - 9am to 4:30pm - Streets Ahead, 109-111 Parliament Road, Middlesbrough, TS1 4JE
- Tuesday - 9am to 1:30pm - Neptune Centre, Ormesby Road, Middlesbrough, TS3 7RP
- Tuesday - 9am to 1:30pm - Middlesbrough House, Elm Street, Middlesbrough, TS1 2DA
- Wednesday - 9am to 1:30pm - Hope Foundation, 1 Grange Road, Middlesbrough, TS1 5BA
- Thursday - 9am to 1:30pm - North Ormesby Community Hub, Derwent Street, Middlesbrough, TS3 6JB
Using a benefit calculator
When you're using a benefit calculator, it's helpful to know:
- what your total income is
- how much your rent is
- what your Council Tax band is
- how much your childcare is
Please note, benefits calculators only give you a estimate of how much you could get - it's not a guarantee.
Universal Credit is a payment to help with your living costs. You may be able to get it if you're on a low income, out of work, or you cannot work. You can claim Universal Credit on GOV.UK.
Citizens Advice has a 'help to claim' service. Their advisors can help you work out if you can get Universal Credit, fill in the application, and prepare for your first appointment at the Jobcentre.
If you're already getting Universal Credit and you need help with your claim, talk to your work coach at the Jobcentre. Organisations like Money Saving Expert and Turn2us also have advice available about Universal Credit.
Some people who are currently getting benefits are also being moved onto Universal Credit. If this happens to you, you'll get a letter from the Department for Work and Pensions.
If you're D/deaf or disabled, you may be able to get additional benefits.
Citizens Advice has information about benefits you can claim if you're sick or disabled. Disability Rights UK has list of support available to disabled people, which includes benefits as well as other support, like a disabled railcard and a low-cost landline phone package.
Pension Credit gives you extra money to help with your living costs if you're over State Pension age and on a low income. Pension Credit comes in two parts: Guarantee Credit and Savings Credit. It's separate from your State Pension.
Guarantee Credit tops up your weekly income to:
- £182.60 if you're single
- £278.70 if you're a couple
In some cases, you could also get extra money, for example if you have a severe disability, or you care for someone else. More information about what you'll get when claiming Pension Credit is available on GOV.UK.
You could get Savings Credit if you reached State Pension age before 6 April 2016, and you saved some money for retirement, for example a personal or workplace pension.
You could get up to:
- £14.48 extra per week if you're single
- £16.20 extra per week if you're a couple
You can claim Pension Credit on GOV.UK.
Age UK has information about Pension Credit as well as other benefits it can help you get.
If you're struggling to pay for childcare, you may be able to get help with the costs. You can check what help you could get by using the childcare calculator on GOV.UK.
The Childcare Choices website has information about childcare offers, including:
- tax-free childcare
- 15 hours free childcare for eligible 2-year-olds
- 14 hours free childcare for 3- and 4-year-olds
- 30 hours free childcare for working families with 3- and 4-year-olds
- tax credits for childcare
- Universal Credit for childcare
Thirteen offers free employability services for tenants and also the general public. They support people who are not in employment, education, or training, and also people looking to get a new job or more hours. Their support is open to customers of any age.
Their support includes:
- one-to-one support with an employability caseworker - who can help with CVs, job applications, and interview skills - for up to nine months
- an employment and skills hub, with access to employment, education, and training opportunities
- a volunteering service which offers volunteering positions with Thirteen
- a training service which offers qualifications
Find out more:
Phone: 01642 947840