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9 April, 2020 Open access

No one making a new claim for universal credit needs to call the DWP, says Secretary of State

New measure introduced in response to 'huge volumes of calls' that has lead to claimants waiting several hours on the helpline

No one making a new claim for universal credit needs to call the DWP, the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Dr Thérèse Coffey has announced.

Following an unprecedented surge in calls to the universal credit helpline in the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the DWP has today launched a new 'Don't call us - we'll call you' initiative that will see a 'bolstered frontline team' proactively call claimants if they need to check any of the information provided as part of the claim, as well as messaging them on their online journal to confirm details.

Advising that the change in policy is in response to the huge volume of calls to the universal credit phone lines that has resulted in people being faced with an engaged tone or being left waiting for several hours, Dr Coffey said - 

'We are doing whatever it takes to make claiming benefits as straightforward as possible during a time when we are receiving an unprecedented number of claims. That’s why no one making a new claim to universal credit needs to call us.

Once you’ve completed your online application, you can rest assured we have received your claim and we will call you if we need to check any of the information you’ve given us.'

NB - the DWP adds that it - 

'... will continue to make calls over the Easter bank holiday weekend, helping people complete their online claims and making sure the safety net catches those who need help.'

For more information see Don't call us - we'll call you from gov.uk