Each winter, as the temperatures drop, the cost of heating the home rises. As it does each year, the Department for Work and Pensions is supporting vulnerable people to heat their homes. This support comes in two different payments, aimed at different people.
The first is the Winter Fuel Payments (WFPs), which is paid to those who have reached State Pension age. The tax-free annual payments are £300 to someone who is aged 80 or over, and £200 to everyone else. The WFPs are made on a household basis, but paid to individuals. For instance, a couple under the age of 75 would get £100 each.
Around 12 million people living in Great Britain receive WFPs, at an annual cost of around £2bn. The vast majority of people receive their WFP automatically during November and December, without having to make a claim. This is done based on information held by the DWP. If you, however, have not received it, then you should call the Winter Fuel Payment Centre on 0800 731 0160, or fill in the claim form at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/winter-fuel-payment-claim-form.
The second is the Cold Weather Payment (CWP) which helps vulnerable people in receipt of certain income-related benefits to meet the additional costs of heating during periods of severe cold weather. A payment of £25 is made when the average temperature has been recorded as, or indeed is forecast to be, 0 degrees Celsius or below over seven consecutive days at the weather station linked to an eligible person’s postcode. Again, there is no need to apply for the CWP, as the vast majority automatically receive the payment directly into their account.
If you believe you are entitled to a payment, but have not received it, you should visit https://www.gov.uk/cold-weather-payments/how-to-claim.