Cold Weather Payments: Guide to government-run scheme
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A Cold Weather Payment is likely to help individuals who are experiencing the ill-effects of cold weather. The scheme provides a payout to eligible people who have experienced temperatures falling below zero over seven consecutive days or more. Eligible people can expect to receive £25 for every seven day period of sub-zero temperatures recorded in their local area.
However, the scheme does not run all year round, and so it is important to understand what the closure will mean.
Every year, the Cold Weather Payment scheme runs from November 1 to March 31.
This therefore leaves Britons with just under two weeks to benefit from the scheme and the payments it provides.
The scheme runs at this time of year due to the fact temperatures often commonly drop significantly.
With spring around the corner, it is hoped the weather will improve, and thus the need for a Cold Weather Payment is likely to be reduced.
In most circumstances, individuals will be provided with an automatic Cold Weather Payment when it is triggered in their area.
There are however key circumstances where a person will need to take action to get a Cold Weather Payment.
The Government website explains Britons must reach out to their Jobcentre Plus if they are in receipt of Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, or income-related Employment and Support Allowance.
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This, though, is only necessary if a certain change in circumstances has occurred.
If a person in this instance has had a baby, or a child under five has come to live with them, they will need to reach out, as they will not get Cold Weather Payments if they do not.
Individuals who will also need to take action before the all-important deadline are those who believe they are entitled but have not received a Cold Weather Payment.
These people should tell their pension centre or Jobcentre Plus office about this if they feel it is relevant.
The situation slightly differs for those on Universal Credit, who will need to sign into their account and add a note to their journal.
If someone does not have an online account, they will be required to ring the Universal Credit helpline instead.
To be eligible for a Cold Weather Payment a person must be in receipt of one of a set number of benefits.
- Pension Credit
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Universal Credit
- Support for Mortgage Interest
A Cold Weather Payment will not affect the other benefits a person receives.
They can expect to receive the money within 14 working days of each period of very cold weather in the area.
Throughout the scheme, Britons have been able to check to see if there has been a trigger in their local area.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has established an official online tool which can help the matter.
To use the Government’s Cold Weather Payment postcode checker, individuals will need to enter the first part of their postcode in and then press continue.
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