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A Short Term Benefit Advance helps people in need who have made a new claim for a particular benefit. If the benefit is awarded, or the decision maker determines that it is likely to be awarded, then it may be that the person eligible for the award will have to wait for a period of time. During this time, financial needs may arise, and that is where the Short Term Benefit Advance can help. Other changes in circumstances, the amount of the benefit entitlement, technical glitches, or other issues can delay the first payment.

The Short Term Benefit Advance applies to England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. The applicant must by 16 years or older. The benefit is administered by the Department for Work and Pensions and is non-taxable. However, this type of benefit is means-tested. Means-tested benefits are for those who have income and capital below a certain level. They include categories such as income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support, Pension Credit, Tax Credits including Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit, Housing Benefit, Council Tax Support, Social Funds including Sure Start Maternity Grant, Funeral Payment, and Cold Weather Payment, as well as Universal Credit. Therefore, the means of the applicant must be low enough to qualify for the Short Term Benefit Advance.

How does one claim the Short Term Benefit Advance?

The qualified applicant can do this by declaring their need to the corresponding contact centre, or to an adviser at a local Jobcentre. The request for a Short Term Benefit Advance will then be forwarded to the benefit centre for a decision.

What documents are required for a Short Term Benefit Advance?

The applicant must provide details which clearly identify the type of benefit that the Short Term Benefit Advance will apply to. This could be Jobseeker’s Allowance, for example.

When does the Short Term Benefit Advance claim begin?

The applicant is notified by the Department for Work and Pensions, Pensions Service, or Jobcentre Plus about when a payment will be issued. It is common for applicants to be paid on the same day as the Short Term Benefit Advance request is made. If this is not the case, then it will likely be paid on the next working day. The approved funds are then paid into the bank or post office account of the applicant in good standing.

Please provide an alternative contact method in case you cannot be reached. This could be a family member or friend’s phone number. The applicant can also register at a local Jobcentre to be contacted regarding their claim.