Money Wellness
Close up of woman taking five pound notes out of her wallet
category iconbenefits
calendar icon04 May 2023

£19bn of benefits unclaimed every year – are you missing out?

UK households are missing out on nearly £19bn of benefits every year, a new report shows. Research from Policy in Practice reveals £18.7bn goes unclaimed by those entitled to support.

A breakdown of the figures shows:

  • 1.2 million households are missing out on £7.5bn of universal credit
  • 2.7 million people are failing to claim council tax support worth £2.8bn
  • at least 5 million households are missing out on cheaper social tariffs for energy, broadband and water

There are a number of reasons these benefits are going unclaimed:

  • People are unaware that they’re entitled to benefits.
  • The claims process is overly complicated.
  • Negative perceptions about claiming benefits put people off.
  • Lots of the available support is discretionary. This means eligibility criteria may vary from area to area and it’s not always clear who is entitled to help.

Director of Policy in Practice Deven Ghelani said:

“It is shocking that £19bn of benefits and support is unclaimed at any time, let alone during a cost-of-living crisis… [The] government need to act to raise awareness of all unclaimed benefits and people should check their eligibility using a free benefits calculator.”

Why not use our free benefits calculator to make sure you’re not missing out?

Avatar of Rebecca Routledge

Rebecca Routledge

A qualified journalist for over 15 years with a background in financial services. Rebecca is Money Wellness’s consumer champion, helping you improve your financial wellbeing by providing information on everything from income maximisation to budgeting and saving tips.

Related posts


17 Jun 2024

Reform UK pledge two-strike rule for jobseekers

Reform UK have dropped their manifesto. Find out how their plans could affect your money situation.


17 Jun 2024

Almost 1 million people claimed mental health benefits within 4 years

Mental-health problems are the main driver for health-related universal-credit claims, new data has revealed.


17 Jun 2024

Over half a million more kids to be affected by two child cap in next 5 years

An extra 670,000 children to grow up in poverty over the course of the next parliament unless the two child cap it scrapped. What does it mean for you?


14 Jun 2024

Farage appears to back an end to the two-child benefit cap

Could reform do away with the two-child cap?