Updated July 3rd 2015
You will normally qualify and get paid for Winter Fuel Payment provided that you were born on or before the 5 January 1953.
(So - at the time of this update, you will be at least 62 years and 6 months old!)
This applies to the coming winter of 2015-2016. You will also have to be living in the UK for the week of 21 to 27 September 2015 . This means that you will normally live here, and not simply pop into the UK to try and grab the money!
You should also be able to get this payment if you live elsewhere in Europe - or indeed in Switzerland. You will need to prove a real link to the UK! (Not sure what this means yet!) The government have been trying hard to prevent this, but have not succeeded. However, if you live elsewhere in the world, you can forget about the Winter Fuel Payment. You will not get it. In effect, you will be discriminated against because you do not live in Europe!
A Winter Fuel Payment - Winter Heating Allowance for over 62 and a half, at today's date - is made each year to those born (for year 1915) on 5th January 1953 or earlier. It is to help with the ever-increasing cost of keeping warm in the winter months. Between the ages of 62.5 to 79 you are entitled to a payment of either £200 or £100. The sum depends upon what your circumstances will be or were during the qualifying week of 21 to 27 September 2015.
If you are 80 or more during the qualifying week of 21 to 27 September 2015 there is an increased sum. See below.
If you were born on or before 5th January 1952......(But are not 80yrs old yet)
If you are over 80 years old – and you are entitled to this winter fuel payment, you will get either £300.00 - £200.00 or £150.00. (Again, this depends upon your circumstances during the qualifying week!)
You may need to make a claim for this winter payment, so make sure that you do this before 31st March 2016 or you could lose your fuel payment entitlement for this current winter. Together with this, if you have a partner who is receiving Winter Fuel Payment heating allowance and you are not, you will have to make a claim for your winter fuel payment.
The good news is, THERE IS NO TAX to pay on this winter fuel payment!
If you did not get your 2014 - 2015 winter fuel payment automatically, then you will need to claim for payment for the winter of 2015 - 2016, You MUST claim and make sure that your form is returned on or before 31 March 2016 . It is assumed that this age qualification will rise even further after that – maybe to 68 – or so for this fuel allowance!
What is this qualifying period about?
If you received your fuel payment last year for last winter, then you should automatically get it this year without having to do anything.
The Winter Fuel Payment will be paid directly into your bank, or you will be sent a cheque if that is the way you requested it. The Winter Fuel Allowance Payment will normally be sent out in either November or December. You will normally get a letter to tell you how much you are going to get, and when you are going to get it.
If you are Receiving any Benefits......
Your Winter Fuel Payment will be paid in the same way that you get paid your other benefit payments.
However This is not the case where you are receiving Child Benefit, Housing Benefit or Council Tax Benefit.
If you are part of a 'couple' there will be one payment for you both, if you are both receiving Pension Credit, Job Seekers Income Based Allowance or ESA - Income Related.
If you are getting State Pension, or another Social Security benefit - You should get the Winter Fuel Payment automatically. (Social security benefits do not include Housing Benefit, Child benefits or Council Tax reduction.)
It is now too late to claim for any winter fuel payment you did not receive last year - 2014-2015.
If you did not receive your fuel payment last year – because you were not entitled to it – but were/are 62 or over during weeks of 15th - 21st September 2015 – AND were receiving your state pension (or other type of social security payments - other than Normal Housing Benefit, Child Benefit or Council Tax Benefit) then you should also get your winter fuel payment automatically.
It is either paid into your Bank direct, or a post office account, or possibly by cheque at the address where you live. You should get a letter telling you how you will be paid.
You will need to claim if you are not receiving any of the 'State' benefits - but are only claiming Housing Benefits, Child Benefit, Council Tax Reduction.
If you are getting your payment for the first time this year, you can have the money paid direct into your bank account.
If you do not make your claim - if you have to - before 22nd of September, then you will not receive your payment until 2015. The claims forms will be available Throughout August 2014
It is possible to claim for previous Winter Fuel Payments if you missed out for any reason for the payments in year 1997-1998; Year 1998-1999; Year 1999-2000. If you missed any payments after that time, then you cannot claim - ie any of the years from 2001 through until 2011. For the present and future years, any claim has to be made by the 30th of March for that current winter. So, for this current year - 2015-2016, claims made after 31st March 2016 will not be allowed. You will need to get a claim form for past winters, you will need a form from the DWP.
Circumstances that affect the amount of payment.
If you receive Pension Credit, Income-based JSA or Income-related ESA, you will get full payment of £200.00 - even if you live with another person. The same is true if you have another eligible person living in your house. If there is someone else living in your house who is NOT on any of the benefits mentioned, and who is not your partner, then they will be entitled to a shared payment.
If you live with someone who gets any of the benefits in the last paragraph - PC; IB-JSA or IR-ESA, and they are your partner - you will not get anything. THEY will get the payment..
If the person you live with is NOT your partner, but they are on any of the benefits listed above, then you will get £100.00 - being a shared payment.
If you get none of the benefits listed above, but you live in a care home, or recognised independent hospital - and have done so for at least 12 weeks before the qualifying time, then you will get £100.00.
If you get any of the benefits listed above, but live in a care home or independent hospital, then you will not receive Winter Fuel Payment/
Provided you qualify – by age etc – and you live alone or you are the only person where you live who qualifies for this payment, then you will get £200 if you are between 60 and 79, or £300 if you are over the age of 80.
If you qualify and live with someone else aged between 62 and 79 you should get £100 each (£200 per house). OR
£150 each, if you are both over the age of 80. If it is just you that is over 80, then you should get £200 and the other person if between 62 and 79 should get £100.00.
Please check these figures and your entitlement with the DWP. We believe them to be accurate - based upon the information supplied by the DWP.
The payments should reach you between early November and Christmas this year.
If you have changed your address – or any of your circumstances have changed – such as bank details, then notify
Winter Fuel Payment Centre
Mail Handling Site A
Wolverhampton WV98 1LR
If you live in the European Union or Switzerland, then you send your claim form to >>>>
Send your claim to the following address if you’re in another EEA country or Switzerland.
Winter Fuel Payment Centre
Mail Handling Site A
Wolverhampton WV98 1ZU UK
Have you had any good or bad experiences in these matters that you would like to tell us about. If they are helpful - or critical - we may publish them the assist others.