More cold weather payments triggered in England and Wales – can you get £75 towards your energy bills?
Cold weather payments worth £25 have once again been triggered for residents in dozens of postcode areas across England and Wales, amid freezing conditions. For some, this will be the third £25 payment this winter – meaning those eligible will get £75 in total. The payments are designed to help households pay for energy bills when temperatures plummet.
Over four million payments have already been made this winter, according to the latest Government figures. New payments are now being made in parts of Bedford, Newcastle, Pontypridd and more.
Below we explain how the payments work, who's eligible and how to check if your area's on the list. If you're currently struggling to pay for your energy, see our Energy bills help guide for the support you could get.
Who's eligible for the payments
In short, people in England, Wales and Northern Ireland who get certain benefits or support for mortgage interest. You may get cold weather payments if you're getting:
- Income-based jobseeker's allowance
- Income-related employment and support allowance
- Income support
- Pension credit
- Support for mortgage interest
- Universal credit
You must have been getting at least one of these benefits for at least one day during the relevant week of cold weather and meet certain other criteria which vary depending on your circumstances – see the full list of criteria for each benefit on Gov.uk.
How much you'll get
You'll get a payment if the average temperature in your area is recorded as, or forecast to be, zero degrees Celsius or below over seven consecutive days.
You get £25 for each seven-day period of very cold weather between 1 November 2022 and 31 March 2023.
Check if your area's on the list
You can check if payments have been triggered in your area using the Government's postcode checker winter fuel payments tool. The tool will also tell you the number of payments triggered – one, two or three (at present).
Payments are automatic – you DON'T need to claim
If you're eligible to get a cold weather payment, you don't need to apply – you'll be paid it automatically within 14 working days into the same bank or building society account as your benefit payments.
Contact the Pension Service or Jobcentre Plus if you think you should have received a cold weather payment but have not. If you're getting universal credit, you can do this by signing into your account and adding a note to your online journal, or by calling the universal credit helpline on 0800 328 5644.
In Scotland, cold weather payments have been replaced by the £50 winter heating payment
If you live in Scotland, you'll no longer be eligible for the cold weather payment as it has now been replaced by the winter heating payment. Instead of a payment based on weather conditions, all eligible households will get a flat £50 each year to help with heating bills.
Eligibility is largely the same as the cold weather payment scheme – the difference is that, in Scotland, you must have been getting a relevant benefit for at least one day during a specific qualifying week of 7 November to 13 November 2022 (rather than during the period of cold weather elsewhere).
The Scottish Government will start making payments to eligible households from February 2023. See our Winter heating payment MSE News story for more info.