Universal Credit in Depth

This is a two-part course, usually run on two consecutive mornings.  Participants can attend either part separately or both parts for the complete course.



Max 3 hours, including registration, course presentations and practice, break and time for questions

Part 1 course outline

  • Eligibility & rollout issues

  • Break

  • The UC Calculation


UC in Depth, Part 1 looks at the current eligibility and rollout issues affecting Universal Credit claimants including who should pursue a UC claim during and after the COVID-19 lockdown. After the break we look at the UC calculation and issues that arise when awards are worked out. It enables participants to recognise when errors cause under and overpayments.


By the end of the module participants will:

  • Know who can claim Universal Credit including an awareness of restrictions in respect of mixed age couples, people from abroad, young people, students and people with capital;

  • Have explored the effect of different changes of circumstances on legacy benefits including those that are typical during the coronavirus outbreak;

  • Be able to recognise when it is appropriate to make a claim to UC and when it is not.

  • Understand the eligibility rules for the various elements that can be included in a UC award;

  • Be aware of how different forms of income affect a UC award;

  • Be able to anticipate the make up of likely awards at the point of application and check that they are correct once an entitlement decision has been made.



Max 3 hours, including registration, course presentations and practice, break and time for questions


Part 2 course outline

  • Claims & payments issues

  • Break

  • The UC Calculation


UC in Depth, Part 2 looks at the issues that come up for people when trying to make and manage a claim to UC. It enables participants to help vulnerable claimants avoid UC payment related problems. After the break we consider the best courses of action to resolve a problem in UC to help participants to identify whether to use a mandatory reconsideration/appeal, a complaint and/or a threat of judicial review.


By the end of the module participants will:

  • Be able to help vulnerable claimants complete the UC application process;

  • Understand how the UC assessment period works and how changes of circumstances affect the award;

  • Have an awareness of when and how a deduction can be made to a UC award in respect of a DWP or third party debt.

  • Be able to identify which decisions are likely to be appealable;

  • Understand when a complaint may be needed instead/as well;

  • Identify where non-appealable decisions may be subject to the threat of judicial review;

  • Understand that often more than one approach is needed.


Methods of delivery
This course is delivered online live with a BTC trainer. It is a practical course delivered using a combination of trainer presentation, exercises and case studies, group discussion and games. Before the course, participants will be provided with a Dropbox link to supporting material including PowerPoint slide handouts and a comprehensive training pack pdf.


Intended audience
This is an advanced course for professional advisors with previous experience of Universal Credit and the wider system who want to explore the more difficult areas of UC. Less experienced advisors should consider whether our Universal Credit Overview course may be more suitable.


Certificates & post course support
Named participants completing the whole course (Parts 1 & 2) will receive an e-certificate and regular benefits news updates and guarantees access our free 12 months post-course advice service.

Course instructions

In the week before the course, participants will receive an email with Zoom link(s) to the course and a Dropbox link to access the pack/slides which are in pdf format. Participants will need to download (or print) the pack (and slides, if required) before each part of the course.

Participants will need a good wifi connection and a suitable computer/laptop to access both the Zoom session and the pack throughout. You may wish to use a separate device for the pack (or split your screen) if you cannot or do not wish to print.