Cold Weather Payment scheme opens – Universal Credit claimants could get extra £25 payment | Personal Finance | Finance
The nights are drawing in and the weather is taking a turn for the worse, meaning many are increasingly opting to turn on the central heating. While energy costs often increase during this time of year, some may well be concerned about how they’ll cope financially during periods of very cold weather.
In an effort to help with the costs that can arise, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) runs the Cold Weather Payment scheme.
A person may be able to get a Cold Weather Payment if they get certain benefits or Support for Mortgage Interest.
This year’s scheme has now opened – running from November 1 to March 31.
Those eligible will get a payment during this time frame if the average temperature in their area is recorded as, or forecast to be, zero degrees celsius or below over seven days in a row.
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For each seven day period of very cold weather during the aforementioned time frame, qualifying people will get £25.
This should be paid within 14 working days following the end of each period of very cold weather.
The money is paid into the same bank or building society account as benefit payments.
Rather than needing to claim the payment, it is instead paid automatically.
That said, some people may need to tell Jobcentre Plus to ensure they get the payment.
This relates to people who get Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance or income-related Employment Support Allowance who have had a baby or had a child under the age of five who have come to live with them.
This payment differs to the Winter Fuel Payment.
Benefit recipients can be assured that Cold Weather Payments do not affect their other benefits.
For those who are interested to find out what benefits they may be eligible for, there are a number of benefits calculators available online.
These can be used to find out what benefits a person could get, as well as how to claim and to see how their benefits may be affected by starting work.
There are three tools signposted on the GOV.UK website – and these calculators are hosted by entitledto, Turn2us, and Policy in Practice.