The payments provide vital reassurance to the most vulnerable households so that they can afford to turn up the heating this winter, and up to 4 million people across Britain are in line for the extra government help this year.
A £25 payment is made for each 7-day period of very cold weather, to help people with the cost of heating their homes.
Up to 23 January, a total of 337,000 payments have been made this winter worth £8,425,000.
Work and Pensions Minister Steve Webb said:
It is vital that we help pensioners and vulnerable people to turn up the thermostat and keep warm when temperatures drop and I expect millions of pounds to be paid out this winter.
This help, with the Winter Fuel Payment and Warm Home Discount Scheme, is making a real difference to support the most vulnerable people in our society.
Cold Weather Payments are paid automatically to people on certain benefits, so it is important that everyone eligible applies for support such as Pension Credit to make sure they receive all the help they are due.
I’d urge pensioners and their families to call us to make a claim.
Payments are made when the temperature is either recorded as, or forecast to be, an average of zero degrees Celsius or below for 7 consecutive days.
Those eligible include poorer pensioners and low-income households, which include disabled people or children under the age of 5.
Subject to meeting certain conditions, Cold Weather Payments are available for those claiming:
- Pension Credit
- Income Support
- income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Universal Credit
Read full details of Cold Weather Payments
People can use the Cold Weather Payment tool to find out if their area is due to receive a payment.
The quickest way to apply for Pension Credit is by phone.
Media enquiries for this press release – 0203 267 5123
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