Winter Fuel Payments are issued to people born before October 5, 1954, but can vary dependent on a person’s circumstances. The allowance is intended to assist older people with their heating costs during the wintertime. It should be paid automatically to those who are eligible to receive it this winter.
Eligible people are usually in receipt of the state pension or another social security benefit, not including Housing Benefit, Council Tax Reduction, Child Benefit or Universal Credit.
While most will be paid automatically, some will not be due to certain circumstances and some may need to make a claim.
This year, the deadline for claiming a payment for winter 2020 to 2021 is March 31, 2021.
The government has explained most Winter Fuel Payments are made automatically between November and December.
The enquiry line is open from Monday to Friday, 9:30am to 3:30pm to provide support to Britons in this situation.
In addition, to be eligible for a Winter Fuel Payment, Britons must have lived in the UK for at least one day during the week of September 21 to 27, 2020.
This is known as the qualifying week and is vital to unlocking a payment.
However, if a person did not live in the UK during this week, they may still be entitled to the payment if both of the following apply:
- a person lives in a European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland
- a person has a ‘genuine and sufficient link’ to the UK – which can include having family there, or living and working there previously.
It is important to note, however, people will be unable to receive the payment if a resident of Cyprus, France, Gibraltar, Greece, Malta, Portugal or Spain.
This is because the average winter temperature in these locations is higher than the warmest region of the UK.
People may still be entitled to receive support from other programmes such as the Warm Home Discount Scheme, or through Cold Weather Payments.
How much a person will receive is entirely dependent on their circumstances during the qualifying week.
However, older people are likely to receive further levels of financial support through this scheme.
Those born on or before September 27, 1940 will receive between £150 and £300 depending on a number of factors.
In comparison, those born between September 28, 1940 and October 5, 1954 will receive anywhere between £100 and £200.
The full details of differences are also outlined on the government website and can be enquired about when contacting the Winter Fuel Payment Centre.
Payments may vary if a person or their partner is receiving one of the following benefits:
- Pension Credit
- income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
- income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
- Income Support
All benefits, pensions and allowance are paid directly into a person’s bank or building society account.