How to backdate the Job Seekers Allowance

Job seekers allowance is a part of the United Kingdom's welfare system. It allows you to claim a weekly allowance if you are temporarily unemployed. You must go to your local jobcentre, fill out a form, and provide documents before approval. If for some reason you become unemployed and do not claim benefits, you can claim them later. However, you must provide a reason that is acceptable to the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) standards.

Make a claim for Jobseekers Allowance either on the phone by calling 0800 055 66 88 or online by going to You can reach a customer service representative Monday to Friday between the hours of 8am to 8pm.

Attend an interview to speak to an adviser about the reasons for your current unemployment and the type of job that you are seeking.

Provide your national insurance number; you may also have to provide the national insurance number of your partner if you are living together. You will need to provide evidence that the national insurance number belongs to you. The number was originally provided on a card; if you have this, bring it, or if not, you can find the number on an old payslip. You will need to provide evidence of your identity such as a birth certificate, passport or driving license, as well as proof of your current residence, such as a utility bill or bank statement.

Provide evidence of any income that you have. You will need to provide this no later than one month from the date that you start your claim.

Backdate your Job Seekers Allowance Claim by up to a maximum of 1 or 3 months depending on the reasons given as to why you failed to claim.

Provide a reason as to why you failed to claim your benefits. Some of the eligible reasons include: language barriers; or, you feel you were given the wrong information in the jobcentre, which led you to believe you would not be able to claim. If your reasons for not claiming were that you did not know you could apply for benefits, you will not be able to backdate your claim.

Provide evidence that you were eligible to claim benefits during that time; this includes showing that you were actively looking for work.

Explain that you feel you are eligible to backdate your claim and state this information clearly on your application form.

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About the Author

Abigail Damoah has been writing since 1996, with her work focusing on academic writings about human resource management. She also writes for eHow. Damoah has a Bachelor of Arts in sociology and criminology from Manchester Metropolitan University and a Master of Business Administration in human resource management from American Intercontinental University in Florida.

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