Winter fuel payment - are you eligible?

Posted on: 14 January 2010 by Gareth Hargreaves

As the UK continues to battle its coldest snap for 30 years, thousands upon thousands of people will be struggling to keep warm this winter.

As the UK continues to battle its coldest snap for 30 years, thousands upon thousands of people will be struggling to keep warm this winter. But to help with this, the Government is providing certain people with a 'Winter Fuel Payment'. But the question is… are you eligible?

The Winter Fuel Payment, according to the gov.uk website, is available to certain people aged over 60, and can range between £125 and £400 depending on individual circumstances.

Eligible for a Winter Fuel Payment?

You may be entitled to assistance if:

  1. You were aged 60 or over on or before 27th September 2009, and
  2. You lived in Great Britain or Northern Ireland on any day between 21st and 27th September 2009 (in some circumstances though, this may include another EEA country or Switzerland).

You will not be eligible for a Winter Fuel Payment if, between 21st and 27th September 2009:

  1. You were hospitalised for more than 52 weeks previously, receiving treatment at no cost as an inpatient.
  2. You were in custody serving a court sentence.
  3. You were subject to immigration control and therefore did not qualify for help from the Department for Work and Pensions.
  4. You resided in a care home, an independent hospital or Ilford Park Polish Resettlement Home (and had done so for 12 weeks - or more - previously) and you were on income-based Jobseeker's Allowance, Pension Credit, or income-related Employment and Support Allowance.
  5. Source

If I am eligible - how should I apply?

If you are eligible for a Winter Fuel Payment (i.e. over the age of 60 by 27th September 2009), you should automatically receive the payment - providing you either received one last winter (and still meet the conditions) or received a State Pension or other benefit (except Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit or Child Benefit) between 21st and 27th September 2009.

 

If I am not eligible - what could I do?

If you find that you aren't eligible for a Winter Fuel Payment, there are various things you could do to help lower the cost of your winter fuel bill - for example, you could:

 

  1. Invest in double glazing (if you haven't done so already, of course). Double-glazed windows will help to keep the heat in your house, whereas older, less-efficient windows will let the heat out - meaning you have to spend more money on heating.
  2. Invest in cavity-wall insulation (again, if you haven't done so already). By packing insulation into the walls of your house, you will help to keep the heat inside your home, which should save you money on your heating bills.

This winter is predicted to be an expensive one for pretty much everyone - and the cost of winter could quite easily become too much for even the most savvy of us. If you struggle to afford your costs this winter, you may want to take a look at the following useful resources:

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