A Short Term Benefit Advance (STBA) is a social security policy in the United Kingdom which helps in loaning individuals with a benefit payment scheme. It is approved by the Department of Works and Pensions, who helps in collecting the amount loaned from the applicant. This benefit mostly serves as a boost to help the applicant go through the initial phase as he or she settles down on to the engagement ahead. Besides, it can also help in case the applicant has an urgent need for financial help that cannot wait until the end of the accounting period at his or her workplace or pension provider. It has been helpful in alleviating problems in health and safety measures.

Benefits that Qualify one to be Considered for the Short Term Benefit Advance

There are instances that warrant the awarding of this loan. They are as follows:-

  1. Jobseekers Allowance – this is a state initiative that gives allowances to UK nationals who have not gotten meaningful employment. The allowance is applicable for individual of working age, not dependant on their parents and not full-time students. The amount goes as high as £73.10 and £114.85 for single and married people respectively, paid after two weeks.
  2.  Income Support – this is an equalisation amount given to UK citizens with lower income or no income. It is applicable if you are not fully engaged in any work, have a social inability (parenthood, education or a refugee)
  3. Incapacity Benefit/Employment and Support Allowance – this is an allowance an incapacitated person (disabled or sick). It can be a financial or personalised help, employed or not. The persons who have been beneficiaries of income support are also eligible for this advance.
  4. Carer Allowance – this is the allowance one get to help someone in need. The earnings can be as much as £62.70 per week payable weekly or commensurately on a monthly basis. The carer may or may not be related to the person being cared for. However, there is no additional allowance if the carer attends to more than one person.
  5. Maternity Allowance – it is an allowance paid to expectant women who do not have maternity benefits form their work. It varies according to the earnings and duration of the maternity leave. Upon approval, the amount is disbursed in 2 or 4 weeks intervals, from week 26 of the pregnancy. The advance can be for 39 weeks payable in either £140.98 or 90% of weekly earnings (whichever is the least) or £27. Also, there is a £27 package for 14 weeks.

All the above instances and many more in the STBA programme are dependent on a number of factors for one to qualify for this advance. The main element is security. There has to be a revenue stream from which the loan can be deducted. Secondly, the location and age of the applicant are also considered. Citizens of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales are eligible, but they have to be 16 years of age and above.

The process of Claiming the Short Term Benefit Advance

The applicant needs to declare interest for the loan to the nearest contact centre or through an authorised person within his or her job centre, after which the application is forwarded to the headquarters for processing. Different countries within the United Kingdom have different contact numbers for different qualification for the benefit advance. The applicant needs a working contact number or address, a detailed application and identity documents.
The benefit payment is a deliberation between the Department of Works and Pensions, job centre and pension service providers. They have the prerogative to inform the applicant when the money is to be paid. However, experience shows that the money is usually released the same day the application is approved, or the following working day, to their accounts. The loan is supposed to be paid in twelve weeks. In case the applicant wants to increase the amount, either through a new claim thanks to a change in circumstance, he or she is free to do so, as long as he proves the case.