Help with gas and electricity bills

Help with gas and electricity bills

Published 14 November 2022
Cost Of Living Energy Bills

Millions of people should have seen £326 appear in their bank accounts in July. It’s the first half of the £650 payment promised by the Chancellor in May to help with the cost of living. – especially electricity and gas bills. A second payment of £324 would have been paid this autumn.

To qualify you must be entitled to one of the means-tested benefits: Universal Credit, Pension Credit, Income Support, Working tax credit, Child tax credit, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) or income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

New style ESA and JSA based on National Insurance contributions don’t count for the payment unless you also get one of the other benefits.

To qualify for the payment, you must normally have been entitled to one of those benefits on 25th May 2022. It will also be paid if you applied before that date and later found out that you were eligible for the benefit then.

People who get any amount of pension credit will qualify. People who live as a couple will only get the payment once; but where more than one person in a household has a separate claim, they will each get the payment.

It will be possible to qualify for the second payment even if you did not qualify for the first. People who get tax credits who also qualify because they receive one of the other benefits will get the payment with that benefit.

The first payments for those who only qualify through tax credits will not be paid until the autumn; their second payment will be made in the winter.

No claim is needed – the payments will be made directly into your bank account.

If your benefits are paid another way, then they will be paid where your benefit is.

The payments are not taxable and will not affect your entitlement to any benefits.