MILLIONS of Brits will start to receive up to £600 each in cost of living payments from today.
Over 11.6million pensioners will get the cash paid directly into their bank accounts to help soften the blow of high energy bills.
The help was first announced by new Prime Minister Rishi Sunak when he was Chancellor back in May
The cash support is made up of the Winter Fuel Payment as well as a “pensioner cost of living payment“.
The Winter Fuel Payment is worth between £100 and £300 and is paid to all those over the state pension age.
But this year, all recipients will receive a £300 boost on top of their Winter Fuel Payment thanks to the cost of living payment.
State pensioners will start to receive the cash directly into their bank accounts from November 23, but not everyone will be paid at the same time.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has said most payments are made automatically in November or December, and should be received by January 13, 2023.
It will be paid in addition to any other cost of living support you are already entitled to.
The money will appear in bank statements with the payment reference starting with the customer’s national Insurance number followed by “DWP WFP” for people in Great Britain, or “DFC WFP” for people in Northern Ireland.
Those that do not receive payment by January 13, 2023, should contact the Winter Fuel Payment Centre.
Mel Stride, secretary of state for work and pensions said: “We want to do everything we can to support pensioners who are often the most exposed to higher costs.
“That’s why we’re providing all pensioner households with an additional £300 on top of their Winter Fuel Payments to heat their homes and stay warm this winter.”
Minister for pensions, Laura Trott added: “It is only right we seek to assist pensioners, who have worked hard all their lives.
“That’s why from next April, pensioners will see a record 10.1% increase to their state pensions.”
The minister said that by upholding the triple lock, the basic state pension will be over £3,050 higher than it was in 2010 – or £870 higher compared to 2022.
The government has also confirmed that it is boosting pension credit for the poorest pensioners by 10.1%.
Pension credit gives you extra cash if you’re of state pension age and on a low income.
If you suspect you or your loved ones are eligible, check out the online Pension Credit calculator on Gov.UK or call 0800 99 1234.
Ms Trott added: “I would urge Sun readers to check and ensure they are not missing out on this vital support.”
Who is eligible for the £300 winter fuel discount?
You’ll get this year’s £300 help if you get the Winter Fuel Payment.
You receive the Winter Fuel Payment if:
- you were born on or before 25 September 1956
- you lived in the UK for at least one day during the week of 19 to 25 September 2022 in what is known as the “qualifying week”
You may still be eligible if you lived in Switzerland or another EEA country in that period.
The same goes for if you can prove you have a sufficient link with the UK, like having lived and worked here, or have family here, but were not living here in the qualifying week.
You won’t get the payment if you live in the following countries though because of the warm weather there: Cyprus, France, Gibraltar, Greece, Malta, Portugal or Spain.
Nor will you get the payment if you are in hospital for more than a year getting free treatment and in some other circumstances.
You can find more about who is eligible on Gov.UK.
How much could I get?
We’ve added a breakdown of the Winter Fuel Payment amounts for 2022-2023.
The overall amount you’ll get varies depending on your circumstances.
And remember this is how much you could get paid alongside your extra £300 pensioner cost of living boost:
- You qualify and live alone – £500 to £600
- You qualify alongside someone you live with who is under 80 and also qualifies – £250 to £350
- You qualify and live with someone over 80 who also qualifies – £250 to £300
- If either you or your partner also receives benefits – £500 to £600 (this amount is the same if someone you live with who isn’t your partner receives certain benefits)
- If you qualify but live in a care home and don’t get benefits – £250 to £300
The overwhelming majority of pensioners will receive their payment automatically, but some people need to claim.
If you haven’t got a Winter Fuel Payment previously, you’ll need to claim if any of the following apply:
- you do not get benefits or the state pension
- the only benefit you get is Adult Disability Payment from the Scottish Government, Housing Benefit, Council Tax Reduction, Child Benefit or Universal Credit
- you live in Switzerland or an EEA country
If you have got a Winter Fuel Payment before, you only need to claim if since your last payment you have either:
- deferred your State Pension
- moved to Switzerland or an EEA country
Winter Fuel Payments can be claimed by phone or post.
For more information, visit the “Winter Fuel Payment” section on the GOV.UK website.