Universal Credit Explained


Universal Credit is a complicated benefit to understand. In this leaflet we try and make it simpler and provide helpful tips for people with M.E. when making an application.


Universal Credit has been rolled out across the UK as a replacement for several older means-tested benefits. It remains a complicated benefit to try and understand and this is not helped by the changes still being made to it.

This leaflet from Ann Innes (Welfare Adviser to the ME Association) attempts to make sense of what is going on – so people with M.E. can have a fair idea of how it works and what to expect when they make an application or are advised of changes to existing benefits.

You might also like to read the more comprehensive guide to making an application for Employment and Support Allowance (incl. Universal Credit), and the non-means-tested disability benefit, Personal Independence Payment.

Telephone Helpline

The ME Association telephone helpline – ME Connect – is available every day of the year, during the hours of 10am-12noon, 2pm-4pm and 7pm-9pm. Please phone: 0344 576 5326 if you have any questions or would simply like to talk to someone who is there to listen.

Please note this leaflet is a download. You can read it on-screen and save to your computer, phone or other device and can attach it to any email you might need to send. But you will need access to a printer if you wish it printed.


0344 576 5326

Available every day of the week between these times: 10am - 12noon, 2pm - 4pm and 7pm - 9pm.

Calls cost the same as other standard landline numbers (starting 01 or 02). If you have a call package for your landline or mobile phone then calls will normally come out of your inclusive minutes.