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Benefits that are public funds

Certain benefits are classed as ‘public funds’ for immigration purposes and cannot be claimed by a person who has no recourse to public funds, unless an exception applies. These benefits are listed at paragraph 6 of the Immigration Rules and in the Home Office guidance on public funds

The following benefits are classed as ‘public funds’ for immigration purposes: 

  • Attendance Allowance
  • Carer’s Allowance
  • Child Benefit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Council Tax Benefit 
  • Council Tax Reduction (also called Council Tax Support)
  • Discretionary payment made by a council in England under section 1 of the Localism Act 2011 (some types of local welfare assistance), not including any payment made under the Energy Rebate Scheme 2022
  • Discretionary support payment made in accordance with any regulations made under article 135 of the Welfare Reform (Northern Ireland) Order 2015 
  • Disability living allowance
  • Domestic Rate Relief (Northern Ireland)
  • Housing Benefit
  • Income-based Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Payment made from a welfare fund under the Welfare Funds (Scotland) Act 2015 
  • Personal Independence Payment
  • Severe Disablement Allowance
  • Social fund payment - includes: 
    • Budgeting loan
    • Sure start maternity grant
    • Funeral payment
    • Cold weather payment
    • Winter fuel payment
  • State Pension Credit
  • Universal Credit
  • Working Tax Credit

Any benefit that is not on this list is not a ‘public fund’ for immigration purposes and may be claimed by a person with no recourse to public funds if they meet the qualifying requirements. 

More information about each of these benefits is available on The following organisations also provide information and advice about claiming benefits: