Cold Weather Payments start from November
People who receive certain benefits could be eligible for small payments if they experience prolonged periods of cold weather this winter.
The government has launched the Cold Weather Payment scheme, running from November until the end of March.
It is different to the Winter Fuel Payment scheme.
How much is it?
In England and Wales, eligible people will receive £25 for each seven-day period of very cold weather between 1 November 2023 and 31 March 2024.
The payments are triggered if the average temperature in your local area is recorded as, or is forecast to be, zero degrees Celsius or below for seven days in a row.
If you live in Scotland, things are slightly different. Instead of Cold Weather Payments, you may be entitled to an annual Winter Heating Payment of £50, and it doesn’t matter about exactly how cold it gets.
You may be entitled to these payments if you receive certain benefits, like Pension Credit, Income Support, Jobseeker’s Allowance, Universal Credit, Employment and Support Allowance or Support for Mortgage Interest.
How to get it
You don’t have to apply for either of these schemes – it should all be paid automatically if you’re eligible. If the temperature measures for the Cold Weather Payments are met, you’ll usually get the payment within 14 working days. You’ll be able to check whether your area is in line for a payment online.
If you are eligible for the Winter Heating Payment, you’ll receive a letter before they make any payment.
Either payments will be paid directly into your bank or building society account – the same one your benefits go into.
If you think you qualify, but don’t receive anything, you should ask for advice from your local benefits team.
To find money and energy advice local to you, please click here.
British Gas Energy Trust currently has two support funds available. The Individuals and Families Fund, and the Energy Support Fund. To check your eligibility and apply, please click here.