Advice Nottingham has a slot on Kemet Radio every third Thursday of the month! Advisors from advice agencies across the city will be appearing on the mid-morning show.

September 2019

Martyn Neal appeared on Thursday 19th September to talk about Meadows Advice Group and their work.

Martyn's advice

Coming up

August 2019

Sue Foster appeared on Thursday 15th August to talk about Bestwood Advice Centre and their work.

Sue's advice

Coming up

July 2019

Sally Marshall appeared on Thursday 18th July to talk about the St Anns Advice Centre and their work.

Sally's advice

What is Universal Credit?

Universal Credit is the government’s new benefits system which covers Income Support, Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Housing Benefit, Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit.

Some important things to remember:

  • Payments are monthly and there’s an initial assessment period of 5 weeks before the first payment
  • Advance payments can be applied for, however, repayments for the advance will be taken as soon as the Universal Credit award is paid
  • Third-party deductions are taken from Universal Credit payments; these deductions can be up to 40% (30% from October)
  • Universal Credit does not include Council Tax reduction, you’ll need to apply for this as well

GET HELP: If you need help to make a claim for Universal Credit contact Citizens Advice Nottingham & District’s Help to Claim service

What if you have a health condition?

Personal Independent Payment (PIP) is the replacement for Disability Living Allowance and is payable if you have personal care or mobility needs. Payable to adults, 16 years to pension age. Pension age is going up so be aware of this as you may still be eligible due to the pension age going up. PIP is payable to people with physical conditions, mental health conditions, learning difficulties, or sensory impairment. It’s awarded if you need help to manage your condition and it’s not taxable, so for instance, you can be in employment or be unemployed. We can help with applying for the benefit, mandatory reconsiderations and appeals/tribunals.

What if you are sick?

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) is included in Universal Credit, however, there is still a version of ESA available outside of Universal Credit. This is called New-Style ESA (contribution based), this would be for someone who has just finished work and who has been working for two years and therefore has National Insurance contributions. New-style ESA is not means-tested. If you’re not eligible for this, you’ll need to apply for Universal Credit which includes ESA.

What happens if you are self-employed and become unwell?

If you are unwell and self-employed, under Universal Credit your payments should adjust according to your earnings. Therefore, if one month you earn less than another, Universal Credit will be topped up.

Get help

The benefits system is incredibly complex, so do get advice. Many people don’t seek advice because they feel they should be able to understand benefits paperwork, but even advisors with many years’ experience find it difficult to navigate. Often, it’s about form filling and evidencing why you need support. We understand the forms and what the DWP needs to see to secure a positive decision. So, see a welfare benefits advisor to get support. Details here

Can you check your welfare benefits entitlement?

You can see an advisor or do a benefits check online at

Can you check your national insurance contributions?

You can check online here

You can check pension age and pension record here

June 2019

Sally Denton kicked off our series of interviews for Kemet radio. Sally met Christine at Kemet Radio on Thursday 20th June to talk about the Nottingham Law Centre and their work, particularly around Housing.

Sally's advice

coming up

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