The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has confirmed the final date that eligible UK households should have received their Winter Fuel Payment.
The department says most pensioners who are eligible for the payment - worth up to £600 per household - should have already received the one-off support already, as it is paid into bank accounts automatically.
The DWP said some 11.6 million Winter Fuel Payments and PensionerCost of Living Payments - support totalling £4.6 billion - have already been made to pensioners across the UK this winter, but some payments will continue into January.
Pensioners who are yet to receive their payment should expect to receive it by 13 January 2023. If the payment does not arrive, the DWP says households should contact the Winter Fuel Payment Centre online or by telephone.
The payments appear in bank statements with the payment reference beginning with the customer’s National Insurance number followed by ‘DWP WFP’ for people in Great Britain, or ‘DFC WFP’ for people in Northern Ireland. Pensioners are being asked to double check their bank statements for this reference number before contacting DWP.
The overwhelming majority of Winter Fuel Payments are paid automatically but some people need to make a claim, such as those who qualify but do not receive benefits or the State Pension and have never previously received a Winter Fuel Payment.
Those who need to make a claim have until 31 March 2023 to do so, the government has said. Those who want to check if they are eligible to claim the Winter Fuel Payment can check online via the government website.
Work and Pensions Secretary Mel Stride said: “As the cold weather bites, it is good to be able to confirm that over 99% of eligible pensioners have already received as much as £600 to help with their energy bills this winter.
“These payments are just one part of the wider support package we are delivering to help with rising bills, with additional help to follow next year – including the biggest State Pension increase in history.”
Further cost of living support
Winter Fuel Payments have been boosted this year by an additional £300 per household Pensioner Cost of Living payment and are part of a package of government support to help households with the cost of heating their homes this winter.
Other support includes a £400 payment towards energy bills and the government’s Energy Price Guarantee that will save the typical household another £900 on top of this. Millions of payments of up to £650 have also been issued this year to low-income households on eligible means-tested benefits, including pensioners receiving Pension Credit.
Additionally, households receiving certain benefits – including Pension Credit – could be eligible for extra money between now and the end of March 2023 thanks to DWP’s Cold Weather Payments.
These are an automatic bank top-up of £25, paid to eligible households when the average temperature has been recorded as, or is forecast to be, zero degrees C or below over seven consecutive days at the weather station linked to an eligible person’s postcode. Postcodes already triggered this Winter can be found on the government website.
Further cost of living support to be paid next year was recently announced by Chancellor Jeremy Hunt. He confirmed that payments will include a further £300 for pensioner households, up to £900 for households on means-tested benefits and £150 for those on eligible disability benefits.