Credit Unions are financial not-for-profit co-operatives. We offer a convenient and safe way to put some money away for the future and a cost-effective way to borrow ethically and responsibly. Find out more about us. From 6th April 2015 Universal Credit can be paid into Advance Credit Union. AdvanceCU has many years experience receiving and managing benefits payments, we have more than 2,000 of our members managing their child benefit with us, plus more with LHA, DLA, etc. We also manage LHA for private landlords.

In order to receive Universal Credit (UC) claimants must have either a bank account or credit union account. If the claimant doesn’t have a viable bank account then credit union may be able to help. As the UC form requires account details we recommend the claimant joins credit union account first, so they will a credit union membership number to use as their reference.

How do I join?

Four steps to join credit union:

  1. Join online, Complete an application form , visit our Erdington office or one of our Community Collection Points.
  2. Provide proof of identity and proof of address. Find out more here
  3. Pay a joining fee of £2.00
  4. £5 deposit to start saving

We will send the new Member a welcome pack and complete their ID and address validation if necessary.

New UC claimants will need to join Advance Credit Union and use their new Membership number as the reference. We recommend Joining online if possible.

Already a member of Advance Credit Union? UC claimants can opt for their Universal Credit to be paid in to the credit union, they just need to use their credit union membership number as the reference.

Claimants receiving UC into an account elsewhere may opt for their UC to be paid in to Advance Credit Union. To arrange this they will need to contact Universal Credit on 0800 328 5644.

How do I access my money?

  • When the claimant’s UC is received by credit union, it will be deposited in that person’s credit union share account.
  • Our ethos is that everyone should save regularly. We require minimum £1/week and recommend at least £3/week or £12/month.
  • The balance of benefits will be transferred onto the Member’s Engage Visa Account which can be used anywhere the Visa sign is displayed by chip and pin, contactless, online payments, cashback at the till or cash from ATM.

We transfer funds onto Engage Accounts usually by 10am or when benefits are received. The Engage Account is based on a prepaid card and includes sort code and account number to pay standing orders and receive payments. The iPhone and Android App and envelope tools help manage your money. Engage charge £2/month, but this is offset by cashback on spending with select retailers such as Asda and Argos. Find out more about Engage Visa Account.

What’s more, claimants will have access to the range of services offered by AdvanceCU:

Regular Savings – build up a financial safety net and earn a dividend on savings (1% last year)

Christmas Club – save a little regularly to reduce the Christmas stress

Internet banking – manage your money 24/7

Pay the rent  – be sure the rent gets paid

Bill Payments – make sure your essential bills get paid

Loans – subject to affordability


Need help with your Universal Credit? Citizens Advice provide a free service help to claim.

Find out more about Universal Credit at Money Advice Service.

Birmingham Council webpages on Universal Credit

Solihull Council has information on the Welfare Changes and provides Support to Success.

How Advance Credit Union can help private landlords and Housing Associations