If you are on means tested benefits, or even if you are in work, you can apply for Jobcnetre Loans, these are short term no interest loans of up to £1500 that can be made by your local job centre in times of crisis to help you to overcome a potential risk to your, or your families health and safety.
Anyone can apply for a job centre loan, however it is much easier to get a joan from the job centre if you are already on means tested benefits as many of the questions that they would have to ask as part of your application will have already been asked when you made your application for benefit.
The benefits that are generally accepted as being means tested are: Jobseekers allowance ( JSA) income support (I.S) and Employments and Support Allowance ( ESA), the two ways that you can apply for Jobcentre loans are to make a paper application using the form SF401 or to make your application over the phone for a same day decision.
Telephone applications are generally just for living expenses applications and will tae around 45 minutes to complete- the calls are free from a BT lanolin, and most of the larger mobile phone operators also allow you to call for a Jobcentre loan for free ( even though its an 0800 number)
Other types of help that you can apply for over the phone include help with fuels ( gas and electric) and also for help with your first months rent in advance payment when you are moving to a new property and don’t have the money to pay your first months rent before housing benefit is sorted.
The maximum that any on household can apply for is £1500, and this limit includes any other social fund debt that you have in the form of other crisis loans or even budgeting loans, it is also worth noting that you and your partners debt ( if they have any) will be combined to give you the amount that your household owe the social fund as a combined total. This means that any new applications can only ever be for the difference between what you already owe and the maximum allowable debt.
Jobcentre loans are limited to a maximum of 3 applications in any roiling 12 month period for living expenses, however this does not include alinements to benefit when you have made a new application to another benefit and are awaiting an outcome.