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£200 alternative fuel payment for households with heating oil or LPG boilers to be paid 'in the New Year'

The alternative fuel payment, which will give £200 to households that don't use mains gas, will be made "as soon as possible in the New Year", according to the Government. We've full info on what the scheme is and how it'll work below. 

The one-off £200 payment is for homes that use heating oil, have an LPG boiler, biomass boiler or use a similar alternative fuel to heat their home. It's to help cover the cost of purchasing the fuels this winter, aiming to provide equivalent support to those that use mains gas, who get a discount on the rates they pay under the Government's energy price guarantee scheme. 

The payment was initially planned as £100, but it was announced in the Autumn Statement it would be doubled to £200. At the same time, it was announced that all households in Northern Ireland would get this payment – not just those that use alternative fuels –  in recognition of "the prevalence of alternative fuel usage in Northern Ireland".

We've now had an update from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) that the payments will be paid in the New Year...

For full info on the all the help available this winter, see our Struggling with energy bills guide, or our full Energy saving tips for more on how to cut back, plus our Cheap heating oil guide for how to keep costs down. 

The £200 payment for most will be paid through their electricity supplier

If you're eligible for the payment, you should get the money automatically from your electricity supplier, likely as bill credit on your electricity bill. 

As there is no central register of people who do not use mains gas for their heating, BEIS said it was "working at pace with stakeholders to identify the best method of identifying eligible customers and making payments to them in a way which is as easy as possible".

However, a small number of households won't be able to get it automatically – such as those that don't have a direct relationship will their electricity supplier. If that's you, you'll likely have to apply to get the money. Full details of how this will work haven't been announced, though BEIS has said it will appoint a designated body to provide the grant to these households. 

The £200 payment is in addition to the £400 energy bill support scheme all households with an electricity supply get. 

What does the Government say?

A UK Government spokesperson said: "We recognise people are struggling with the rising cost of living, including those who use heating oil and fuels other than gas to warm their homes. That is why we have increased the alternative fuel payment (AFP) to £200 and are committed to delivering this to customers as soon as possible.

"Those who do not have a relationship with an electricity supplier will receive payment through the AFP Alternative Fund and we will confirm details of when this will be made shortly."

On when this will be paid, it told us: "The vast majority of alternative fuel payments eligible households in Great Britain will receive payment automatically via their electricity supplier with no need to take any action, and this payment will be made as soon as possible in the New Year."

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