A single crystal of urea oxalic acid was grown by slow evaporation method. The lattice parameters are a=5.13 Å, b=12.48 Å, c=7.07 Å, β=98.13° with V=448.5 Å3 which belongs to monoclinic system with space group P21/c obtained from single crystal X-ray diffraction analysis. UV–visible spectrum was recorded from the wavelength region of 200–800 nm and its cutoff wavelength was found to be 270 nm. Optical energy band gap of 4.57 eV was determined using Tau's plot relation. Fourier transform infrared vibrational spectrum confirmed the presence of N–H asymmetric stretching which occurs at 3444 cm−1 and 1853 cm−1 arising due to the amide C=O symmetric stretching. The emission was observed at 364 nm from the photoluminescence spectrum. The mechanical stability of the grown crystal was estimated by Vickers microhardness studies and it is evident that the grown crystal belongs to soft material category. Hardness related parameters such as elastic stiffness constant, fracture mechanics, brittleness index and yield strength were also evaluated. The dielectric constant and dielectric loss of the grown crystal were carried out as a function of frequency for different temperatures. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.