What is the Winter Fuel Payment and who is eligible? #
The winter season in the UK can be challenging, with temperatures dropping and energy bills rising. To help those who struggle to keep up with the cost of heating their homes during this time, the UK government offers a Winter Fuel Payment. In this article, we will look at what the Winter Fuel Payment is, who is eligible, how much you can get. As well as when to expect the payment.
What is the Winter Fuel Payment? #
The Winter Fuel Payment is a tax-free payment made to eligible pensioners to help them pay for their heating bills during the winter months. The payment is designed to cover the cost of any type of fuel. Whether this is gas, electricity, oil, or solid fuels like coal.
Who is Eligible (dates based on Winter 2022-23)? #
To be eligible for the Winter Fuel Payment, you…
- must have been born on or before 26th September 1956
- must have lived in the UK for at least one day during the week of 18-24 September 2022 (also known as the qualifying week)
You may also be eligible if…
- you receive certain benefits, including Pension Credit, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, or income-related Employment and Support Allowance
It is important to remember this payment is not means-tested, which means that it is available to all eligible pensioners, regardless of their income or savings.
How Much is the Payment? #
The amount of you can receive depends on your circumstances. For the previous year, the amount also included a Pensioner Cost of Living Payment of between £150 and £300. This Government will apply this extra amount to the 2023-2024 payment.
For the winter of 2023-2024, those born between September 26 September 1942 and 25 September 1956 got £500. Those born before 26 September 1942 will receive £600.
If you received the Winter Fuel Payment in the previous year and your circumstances haven’t changed, you won’t need to reapply. You will get the payment automatically.
When will I get the Winter Fuel Payment? #
If you are eligible you will receive a letter in October or November. People usually receive their payment between November and December. If you are eligible, you should receive your payment automatically. However, if you haven’t received your payment by the end of January, you should contact your local council.
Can I Use Winter Fuel Payment for Something Else? #
The Winter Fuel Payment is intended to help pensioners pay for their heating bills. However, you can use the payment for other essential living costs if you wish, such as food or other bills. It is entirely up to you how you use the payment.
How do I claim the Winter Fuel Payment? #
If you are claiming your state pension, you do not need to apply. Your payment will be made automatically. Also, if you are claiming any of the following you do not need to apply:
- State Pension
- Pension Credit
- Attendance Allowance
- Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
- Carers Allowance
- Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
- Income Support
- income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
- income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
- awards from the War Pensions Scheme
- Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
- Incapacity Benefit
- Industrial Death Benefit
If you are not claiming any of the above, you can apply via phone or post. Take a look at the Government page here to find out more details. The deadline to make your claim for winter is usually at the end of March. For example, to claim for the winter of 2022-23, the deadline was 31st March 2023.
The Winter Fuel Payment is a valuable resource for eligible pensioners who struggle to keep up with their heating bills during the winter season. It encourages older people to turn on their heating, which is directly linked with health. It is a simple and effective way for the government to support those who are most vulnerable in the cold weather. If you think you might be eligible, make sure to keep an eye out for your payment between November and December. Remember that you don’t need to apply if you received the payment last year, and you can use the payment for other essential living costs if you wish. Stay warm this winter!
If you are struggling with your finances in general, you might find this article helpful: Support for Financial Difficulty.