Many people are unaware that they could be eligible for benefits and other financial help and are not claiming and receiving money that is rightfully theirs. Hundreds of thousands of households across the UK could be better off, but are failing to claim money from the government that they’re entitled to.
Research from Turn2us – a national charity helping people in hardship – has found that 48 per cent of Brits are not claiming the welfare benefits and tax credits they could be entitled to but shockingly, more than 80% of people check to see whether they’re eligible. Maybe the staggering £15 billion in welfare benefits and tax credits that goes unclaimed each year may change your mind?
There are many reasons people simply think they’re not entitled to benefits money, from complex eligibility criteria and claims processes, to people thinking they're not entitled to the money because they work. Help is available though, and it could be much more than most people realise.
Claiming what's rightfully yours can make a huge difference and give a much needed boost to your household income. There are various benefits available to help different people, not just those out of work or families on a very low income. So, if you’re unemployed, disabled, ill and unable to work, elderly, recent parents, a carer or guardian or family earning less than £50,000 a year and have children under 16, you may want to rethink what could be rightfully yours.
Making sure that you claim for everything that you are entitled may seem difficult, but there’s a quick and easy way to find out if you’re missing out any benefits by using sites such as Entitledto, Citizens Advice or Turn2Us.
They look at all the major benefits and give you an idea of which benefits you may be entitled to and how much you could get, as well as advice on eligibility and claiming.
Simply type in your information such as age, number of children, housing situation, disability status, income, benefits you already receive, and they’ll work everything out for you. Just be aware though that if you’re under 18, the calculators don’t give you any results.
Remember, give accurate as possible information and answer all the questions so that you can get a best estimate of your entitlement. Once you know which benefits you may be eligible to receive it’s important to make a claim as soon as possible, and in some cases your benefits may be backdated.
Financial hardship can happen for many different reasons and could affect anyone at any time in their lives. Instead of battling with money worries, we’d encourage everyone to claim financial help if and when they need it.