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Benefits recipients to receive a £10 Christmas bonus – who’ll get it?

Millions of people who receive certain benefits, including the state pension, could get a one-off tax-free £10 Christmas bonus from the Government. If you are eligible, the money should be paid automatically but you can make a claim if you think you've wrongly missed out. 

We've full details on the Department for Work and Pensions' (DWP) bonus scheme below. In 2017/18 - the latest immediately available figures - around 16 million people claimed the bonus, according to DWP.

In the meantime, to check you're not missing out on any benefits, use our Benefits Calculator. For further information, you can also see our benefits guides

You must receive at least one eligible benefit during the first full week of December to qualify

To qualify for the £10 bonus you must be present or classed as being an ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man or Gibraltar during the first full week of December, which this year is 6 to 13 December.

You must also be in receipt of at least ONE of the following benefits during this week: 

  • Armed forces independence payment
  • Attendance allowance
  • Carer’s allowance
  • Child disability payment
  • Constant attendance allowance (paid under industrial injuries or war pensions schemes)
  • Contribution-based employment and support allowance (once the main phase of the benefit is entered after the first 13 weeks of claim)
  • Disability living allowance
  • Incapacity benefit at the long-term rate
  • Industrial death benefit (for widows or widowers)
  • Mobility supplement
  • Pension credit - the guarantee element
  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
  • State pension (including Graduated Retirement Benefit)
  • Severe disablement allowance 
  • Unemployability supplement or allowance (paid under industrial injuries or war pensions schemes)
  • War disablement pension at state pension age
  • War widow’s pension
  • Widowed mother’s allowance
  • Widowed parent’s allowance
  • Widow’s pension

If you have not claimed your state pension, and you're not entitled to one of the other qualifying benefits above then you will not receive the Christmas bonus.

In addition, you can't get the bonus if you only receive Universal Credit and none of the other benefits listed above. DWP says this is due to Universal Credit being set-up on a different system.   

Your partner may also be able to get the bonus if you receive benefits and they don't

If you are part of a married couple, in a civil partnership or living together, and you both get one of the above benefits, you will each get a £10 bonus payment.

Your partner may also be able to get the £10 bonus if you receive one of the qualifying benefits but they don't, so long as the following apply: 

  • You’re both over state pension age by the end of the qualifying week.
  • Your partner or civil partner was also present (or classed as being an 'ordinarily resident') in the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man, Gibraltar, a European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland during the qualifying week.

And either:

  • You’re entitled to an increase of a qualifying benefit for your partner or civil partner.
  • The only qualifying benefit you’re getting is pension credit.

Most won't need to do anything to claim the bonus

If you are eligible for the £10 you shouldn't need to do anything to claim it. You should receive it automatically into the account you receive your usual benefits. It may show up on your statement under ‘DWP XB’.

There is no specific payment date and this will vary depending on which benefits you receive, but DWP says it aims for eligible people to get the £10 before Christmas.

The bonus will not affect your benefit payments. 

If your payment hasn't arrived - you can ask for it

If you think you should get the bonus and have not, contact the Jobcentre Plus Office. You can find your nearest JobCentre Plus branch via You can also phone 0800 055 6688.

Alternatively, you can also contact the Pension Service on 0800 731 0469, although this only applies to those in receipt of their state pension.

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