Winter Fuel Payment 2022/23: eligibility, how to apply - and who gets extra £300 cost of living payment?

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Rishi Sunak promised the one-off Pensioner Cost of Living Payment will start in autumn

Millions of older people are eligible to claim a Winter Fuel Payment to help towards energy bills from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

The allowance helps to pay for gas and electric during the colder months and is available to those over State Pension age.

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Thousands of people are also eligible to receive an extra £300 one-off Pensioner Cost of Living Payment on top of their Winter Fuel Payment later this year, with the DWP releasing new guidance on who will qualify for the cash boost.

AFP via Getty Images

What is the one-off Pensioner Cost of Living Payment?

The additional payment is to help people over State Pension age manage energy bills this winter.

Mr Sunak promised in the Commons that the Winter Fuel Payment will be with pensioners by autumn 2022.

Last winter, most winter fuel payments were made automatically between November and December, with the last lump sums coming on 14 January 2022 at the very latest.

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The Winter Fuel Payment and the additional Pensioner Cost of Living Payment is not taxable and does not affect eligibility for other benefits.

However, the full amount of Winter Fuel Payment you will get for winter 2022 to 2023 depends on your circumstances.

Who is eligible for the cash boost?

The winter fuel payment for 2022/23 will be made available for households that include someone born on or before 25 September 1956.

You must also live in the UK for at least one day during the week of 19-25 September 2022.

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If you do not live in the UK during the qualifying week, you might still get the payment if both the following apply:

  • You live in Switzerland or a European Economic Area (EEA) country
  • You have a genuine and sufficient link to the UK – this can include having lived or worked in the UK, and having family in the UK

You cannot 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 don’t typically have to apply for the winter fuel payment, if you are eligible you should receive the money automatically.

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However, if you have not had the payment before, you only need to claim if any of the following apply:

  • You do not get benefits or a state pension
  • You only get housing benefit, council tax reduction, child benefit or universal credit
  • You get benefits or a state pension but live in Switzerland or an EEA country

You can cntact the winter fuel payment scheme online or via phone or post if you wish to enquire further or make changes to your payments.

Winter Fuel Payment rates 2022/23

You qualify and live alone (or none of the people you live with qualify)

  • Born between 25 September 1942 and 25 September 1956: £500
  • Born on or before 25 September 1942: £600

You qualify and live with someone under 80 who also qualifies

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  • Born between 25 September 1942 and 25 September 1956: £250
  • Born on or before 25 September 1942: £350

You qualify and live with someone 80 or over who also qualifies

  • Born between 25 September 1942 and 25 September 1956: £250
  • Born on or before 25 September 1942: £300

You qualify and live with someone who gets certain benefits

Benefits - Pension Credit, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) or Income Support.

  • Born between 25 September 1942 and 25 September 1956: £500 - only one of you will get the payment
  • Born on or before 25 September 1942: £600 - only one of you will get the payment

You qualify, live in a care home and do not get certain benefits

Benefits - Pension Credit, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) or Income Support

  • Born between 25 September 1942 and 25 September 1956: £250
  • Born on or before 25 September 1942: £300
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