Universal Credit Cold Weather Payments and how to claim them
After a mild New Year, temperatures have begun to once again take a plunge - and if you’re on Universal Credit, there might be help available to pay for heating should the cold weather worsen.
Universal Credit Cold Weather Payments are handed to people on certain benefits in areas where there’s consistent freezing temperatures.
For people on Universal Credit, Support for Mortgage Interest, Pension Credit, Income Support, Jobseeker’s Allowance, or income-related Employment and Support allowance - the payments are available.
Read: Temperatures to hit freezing in parts of Cornwall
However, they are not guaranteed as soon as winter rolls around like the Winter Fuel Allowance for pensioners.
Who is eligible for Cold Weather Payments?
Cold Weather Payments are only given when the average temperature in your area is recorded as, or forecast to be, 0 degrees (or lower) for seven days straight between November 1, 2021, and March 31, 2022.
You can check here if your area is eligible for a Cold Weather Payment so far this winter.
They are worth £25 for each seven-day period of the cold weather within the eligible winter months.
The payments are normally given within 14 days of the cold weather and won’t necessarily come in on the same day as your other benefits.
The payments also do not affect other benefits you are owed and do not need to be paid back like advanced payments.
How to apply for Cold Weather Payments
You don’t need to apply for the payments themselves. Instead, as long as your Universal Credit details are up-to-date for where you are living, they will be paid to you.
More information can be found here on the Government website.
What other help is out there to pay for energy
Aside from Cold Weather Payments, there is also the Winter Fuel Payment, which is only for pensioners born on or before September 26, 1955.
The payments are worth between £100 and £300 and also do not need to be applied for if you are on a state pension. Otherwise, head to the Government website for more information.
The amount you get for both Cold Weather and Winter Fuel payments is tax free.
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