Adam Scorer calls for 'targeted financial support' on energy bills
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This support for gas and electricity costs is accessible to those who qualify for the Government’s Cold Weather Payment scheme. Through this initiative, those most affected by extremely cold weather and subsequent high energy usage are entitled to money off their bills. Since October 2022, energy bills have increased for the average household by 27 percent even with support such as the price guarantee in place.
Those who qualify for this energy bill support do not need to be concerned about spending time applying for it.
This is because those who are eligible to get a Cold Weather Payment will be awarded it automatically.
Due to the scheme running for only five months, households are urged to check and see if they can get a payment for their local area.
This can be done by logging onto the Government’s Cold Weather Payment webpage and using the postcode checker.
When someone uses this service, they will be asked what part of the UK they live in: England, Scotland or Wales.
Those who live in Northern Ireland should use that part of the UK’s own website to check their eligibility.
It should also be noted that households in Scotland are no longer eligible for Cold Weather Payments, but some may be entitled to the new Winter Heating Payment which is a yearly sum of £50.
However, those in England and Wales will be able to access in full the postcode checker on the gov.uk website.
Potential claimants will be asked to enter the first part of their postcode to determine their eligibility.
When this is done, the Government shares how many outstanding Cold Weather Payments are due to be claimed in that area.
It will also share the period at which this household would have been entitled to this support and the weather station that was used to determine how cold the weather was.
Who is eligible for Cold Weather Payments?
As part of this support, people who claim certain qualifying benefit payments get £25 to help pay for their energy bills.
However, this is only applied if their postcode experiences sub-zero temperatures over a seven-day period.
Anyone who qualifies will get £25 for each seven-day period of very cold weather between November 1 and March 31.
While the majority only are eligible for £25, households could get double or triple the amount if they experience two or three seven-day periods of freezing weather.
Among the qualifying payments for this sum of money, are Pension Credit, Income Support, Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Universal Credit and Support for Mortgage Interest.
On why people should check their eligibility, USwitch’s Richard Neudegg explained: “The payments go to the most vulnerable people in areas where the mercury has plunged to zero degrees Celsius or below over seven consecutive days.
“Nearly £100million was paid out in 2020-21, and higher bills this winter mean the payments are more valuable than ever this year.”
Those who believe they should have been paid, but have yet to receive a Cold Weather Payment, should contact their local DWP office as soon as possible.
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