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Money, benefits and financial support

Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme (Homes for Ukraine - interim payment)

As part of the Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme (Homes for Ukraine), guests who have arrived in Lincolnshire are entitled to apply for a one off payment to assist during the time it takes to either access employment and/or have a claim for universal credit processed.  The payment is £200 per person in the group (including children).

We understand that not all guests will have access to suitable banking arrangements, councils have therefore established a process with a charity called Charis who will issue an electronic voucher that can be taken to various outlets and exchanged for cash.

If you have not yet applied for this one off payment, please email homesforukraine@lincolnshire.gov.uk to confirm you have arrived with your sponsor and you will be provided with further guidance about how to apply. 

 

Big Lincolnshire Welcome – Ukraine Refugee Fund

Due to being oversubscribed, funding from the Big Lincolnshire Welcome is temporarily closed for new applications. Any applications which were received prior to 24th August 2022 will continue to be processed and assessed accordingly.

If you are returning to work or education and require assistance overcoming a barrier, the MAST scheme is available to apply to, details of which can be found at www.lincolnshirecf.co.uk/grants.

 

Universal Credit

People arriving in the UK from Ukraine because of the Russian invasion can apply for financial help immediately and get extra help to find work. To find out more about the full range of benefits you could be eligible for, visit Understanding Universal Credit: Support for those fleeing the conflict in Ukraine.

It is worth noting that although the word ‘credit’ translates to ‘loan’ in Ukrainian, general Universal Credit is not repayable (although advances etc. are).

Claimants will be allocated to a work coach, who will be able to assist with the following:

  • pathway to eligibility for applicable benefits
  • access to bank accounts
  • applications for National Insurance Numbers (NINOs)
  • preparation for being work ready and access to employment opportunities
  • access to training
  • guidance on converting qualifications
  • CV guidance

 

Housing costs element of Universal Credit

The Turn2us website provides a useful overview of the housing costs element of Universal Credit

 

Jobcentre Support

Jobcentre Support for Ukrainian Evacuees (PDF flyer)

 

Citizens Advice

For further impartial advice, Citizens Advice offer a national ‘Help to Claim’ service which is accessible via Citizens Advice or call 0800 144 8444 (calls are free and lines open 8am-6pm, Monday to Friday). Support with translation services where needed to access the service is also available. 

 

CAP UK - money management advice and resources 

The Christians Against Poverty (CAP) website contains a wealth of money management advice, including help with budgeting and some key terms explained.

CAP also offers free money management courses, including some held in Lincoln, which aim to help people take control of their finances to budget, save and help prevent debt. 

 

Guidance for claiming Child Benefit

Anyone coming to the UK under the Ukraine Family Scheme or Homes for Ukraine scheme is entitled to claim Child Benefit immediately, rather than having to wait for the usual three-month qualifying period. 

People who wish to claim should complete a CH2 Child Benefit claim form and submit this by post to the Child Benefit office. The address is included on the form.

They should provide an original birth certificate and the passport or travel document used to enter the UK. Where this documentation is not immediately available, people are advised to include a note in their claim and someone from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will be in touch to discuss further.

Anyone wanting more information on Child Benefit can call 0300 200 3100 (from inside the UK) or visit gov.uk.

To complete a CH2 form, visit gov.uk

 

Bank account options within the UK

The currency in the UK is the Pound Sterling (£). £1 (one pound) = 100p (100 pennies, or pence). Cash is accepted in most places, but increasingly people use debit or credit cards to pay for goods and services.

You will require a UK bank account in order to be paid for employment, receive benefits, make bill payments for utilities (such as phone bill) or pay rent.  Setting up a bank account should be made a priority upon arrival in the UK.

To open a bank account you will need to complete an application form either in the bank in person or online. They will ask for several documents as proof of identity including full name, date of birth and address. This is usually by means of a passport, driving licence or utility bill. Different forms of identification will be accepted if the previous are not owned, but this may differ depending upon the bank.

Banking guide for refugees (Refugee Council website)

 

HSBC 

HSBC are helping Ukrainian refugees in the UK to apply for a current account. Colleagues will work with you to review ID documents available and provide guidance. You can apply online or in a branch local to you.

Visit HSBC for more information or if you need further support email lincoln.appointments@hsbc.com.

 

Proof of identity - in order of most widely accepted
  • current Passport
  • Biometric Residency Permit (BRP)
  • Department for Work and Pensions letter confirming right or entitlement to benefits
  • current full (or provisional) UK driving licence
  • UK Home Office travel document
  • UK Home Office application registration card
  • UK Home Office immigration status with right to reside
  • notification of other government or local authority grant

Note: A provisional driving licence can be obtained with a biometric residency permit. There is a fee for getting a provisional driving licence. How to apply for a provisional licence

 

Proof of address - in order of most widely accepted
  • council tax bill
  • Tenancy Agreement
  • utility bill (electricity, gas or water bill) from the last 3 to 4 months
  • current EU or EEA driver’s licence (or provisional)
  • HMRC Tax Notification
  • Department for Work and Pensions letter confirming right to benefits

You should ask about any charges when you open a bank account. Depending on the terms and conditions of your account, you may be charged if you spend more money than you have or for other services that may be included.

Once you open your account, you will usually be issued with a debit card which can be used to pay for things in most shops. You can also arrange for bills to be paid directly from your account using ‘direct debit’.

Further advice can be found on the Citizens Advice website or by speaking directly to your bank of choice.

 

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