Thankfully there is help at hand in the form of payments to assist people with their utility bills during this time. But what is the winter fuel payment and how does it work?
What is the DWP winter fuel payment?
The Department for Work and Pensions has a fund for elderly people to claim money towards heating costs in winter.
The winter fuel payment is worth between £100 and £300 depending on your circumstances.
You only need to apply if you have never received it or don't get a State Pension or benefits. You can check that you are eligible here.
You qualify for a Winter Fuel Payment if both the following apply:
- you were born on or before 5 August 1953
- you’ll be living in the UK for at least one day during the week of 18 to 24 September 2017 – this is called the ‘qualifying week’
You can’t get the payment if you live in Cyprus, France, Gibraltar, Greece, Malta, Portugal or Spain.
This is because the average winter temperature is higher than the warmest region of the UK.
You may still be able to get Cold Weather Payment or the Warm Home Discount Scheme, even if you don’t qualify for Winter Fuel Payment.
The Cold Weather Payment is a payout to benefits claimants when temperatures in their area are below zero degrees Celsius for seven consecutive days in winter.
The Government said it had paid more than £40 million in winter support across the UK this winter.
Guy Opperman, Minister for Pensions and Financial Inclusion, said: “It’s important that older people keep their homes warm during the cold snap and we provide a range of financial support including Winter Fuel and Cold Weather Payments to enable them to do so.
“We urge pensioners across the UK to check that they and their relatives, friends and neighbours are keeping warm and receiving the support they are entitled to.”
How much do you get for the winter fuel allowance?
Money you get for the winter fuel allowance depends on your circumstances.
The table below spells out how much you could be entitled to.
Your payment may be different if you or your partner get one of the following benefits:
- Pension Credit
- income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
- income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
- Income Support
Visit the Department for Work and Pensions website for more details.
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