What is the Winter Fuel Allowance? Payment given to millions you could be eligible for

Keeping warm during the winter time is important for all of us, but some families have to grapple with this as fuel prices rise to new heights

You have the choice between eating instead of heating and therefore wrap yourself in warm clothing to survive the bitter time.

There is support, however. And that’s a payment you can take to cover your winter heating bills. It’s called winter fuel allowance and this is how it works …

Read more: All the financial support you can get from the government this winter

What is the winter fuel allowance?

The Winter Fuel Allowance was introduced in 1997 under the tenure of former Labor Prime Minister Tony Blair to help older people meet heating bills for their homes during the winter months.

It is for people born on or before September 26, 1955. The amount you will receive will be anywhere from £ 100 to £ 300 depending on where you meet the criteria. In 2019/20 it was claimed by 11.4 million people.

If you are eligible for the winter fuel allowance, your money should be automatically paid out to you. This is the case if you are receiving the state pension or other benefit.

It is usually paid out as a lump sum in the months of November or December, but the Department of Labor and Pensions says it should be spent no later than January 14, 2022.

If you haven’t received your cash and you think you are eligible, you can request it by phone or mail. For more information, see the government website .

If you are not eligible for the winter fuel allowance or think you cannot claim it, there are other packages available to help you keep heating during the colder months.

The main other benefit given to people in winter is the cold weather payment.

This is different from the winter fuel allowance because it depends on the temperature reaching a certain degree before the money is spent. The government will give you £ 25 if your mercury drops to zero degrees Celsius or below over a period of seven consecutive days. You can find out more about this benefit at the government website .

Another payment that you may be able to receive is from the Household Support Fund. This is a £ 500 million funding program that will allow local councils to give money to families who may be having trouble paying their heating or food bills, or their utility bills.

Applications for this pot of cash must be submitted directly to your municipality. For more information on this and other packages you may be eligible for, see our Rounding up piece .

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