An estimated five million Cold Weather Payments worth £130 million have been issued to households for support with energy bills this winter.

  • Over five million £25 Cold Weather Payments have been made to households in England and Wales
  • Almost two million payments made to pensioners and over three million to working-age households
  • Cold Weather Payments are paid directly into people’s bank accounts between November and March

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) estimates that over £130 million was paid out from November until the end of March – with over £40 million of this going to pensioners in receipt of Pension Credit.

DWP’s Cold Weather Payments are an automatic bank top-up of £25, triggered to be paid to eligible households when the average temperature has been recorded as, or is forecast to be, zero degrees Celsius or below for seven consecutive days at the weather station linked to an eligible person’s postcode.

Around 80% of this winter’s payments – approximately four million – were triggered in December.

Minister for Pensions Laura Trott said:

Cold Weather Payments provide vital support to help people through cold snaps each Winter.

While those colder months are now thankfully behind us, there will be no let-up in our extensive support for households across the country.

This government is committed to helping the most vulnerable in our society. We’re delivering the biggest State Pension increase in history and boosting benefits by over 10 percent, while our Energy Price Guarantee will continue to hold down people’s energy bills.

Between 25 April and 17 May, millions of UK households will receive £301 directly from the DWP. This is the first of three payments totalling up to £900 for those eligible and on means-tested benefits, such as Universal Credit or Pension Credit, in 2023/24. This follows the £650 Cost of Living Payment made to over eight million people in 2022. There will also be further payments worth £150 for eligible disabled people and £300 for pensioners due later this year, meaning the most vulnerable can receive up to £1,350 in direct payments.

Further Information

  • Cold Weather Payments are targeted at those in receipt of eligible benefits with a pension element or disability component, or where there is a child under five in the household.
  • Cold Weather Payments are paid in England and Wales, as this is now a devolved matter in Scotland.

  • The qualifying income-related benefits to receive Cold Weather Payments include:
  1. Retired people in receipt of Pension Credit.

  2. People unable to work, in receipt of income-related Employment and Support Allowance that includes a work-related activity or support component.

  3. People in receipt of Income Support, income-related Employment and Support Allowance in the assessment phase, or income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, and who have a pensioner or disability premium or receive the additional element paid with Child Tax Credit where there is a disabled child in the family, or a have child under the age of five, also receive payments.

  4. People in receipt of Universal Credit if they, or their partner, are not employed or self-employed and one of the following apply: they have a health condition or disability and have limited capability for work (with or without work-related activity); they have a child under 5 living with them.

  5. People in receipt of Universal Credit which includes a disabled child amount, whether they are employed or not.

  6. People in receipt of a Support for Mortgage Interest Loan will also usually be eligible.

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Published 12 April 2023