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Pensioners to Apply for Pension Credit by 19 May to unlock £301 Cost of Living payment

Apply for Pension Credit

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has announced that as of May 3rd 2023, over 7 million households in the UK have received a much-needed £301 Cost of Living. However, households need to make a Pension Credit claim before May 19th to receive it, as thousands of eligible households do not claim their pension credit.

According to the Department of Works and Pensions, pensioners can claim, on average, over £3,500 in pension credit a year. The £301 will be the first of three Cost of Living payments spread across the 2023/24 tax year, making it worth at least £900. The subsequent payments will be in autumn (£300) and next year spring (£299).

With the rising cost of living, the announcement of the £301 Cost of Living Payment by the DWP comes as a welcome relief for millions of households across the country. The top-up of the state pension as well as other payments and discount will help individuals and families cope with the cost-of-livingcrisis to ensure a more comfortable retirement.

Pension Credit Explained

Pension Credit is a means-tested benefit the UK government provides to support individuals who have reached the State Pension Age and have a low income. It is designed to provide financial assistance to those who lack funds to meet their basic needs. In addition, pension credit helps access other benefits such as housing benefits, council tax discounts and Cost of Living payments.

Pension Credit is a vital support system for retired individuals with low income. It ensures a minimum weekly income of £201.05 for single pensioners and £306.85 for couples. Individuals with higher income can still qualify for pension credit if they have a disability. Also, individuals can get extra amounts on their pension credit if they have other responsibilities and costs.

Suppose you believe you may be eligible for pension credit. In that case, it is advisable to visit the official government website or seek assistance from relevant helplines to understand the eligibility criteria and begin the application process.

How to claim Pension Credit and get £301 Cost of Living Payment

To be eligible for the £301 Cost of Living Payment, individuals must register for the Pension Credit before May 19th, 2023. The application must be backdated by 3 months to increase your chances of getting the £301 Cost of Living Payment, and subsequent payments.

Pension credit is separate from the State Pension. However, to qualify for pension credit, you must have reached the State Pension Age and live in England, Wales or Scotland to qualify. Also, you must have received one of the eligible benefits between January 26th and February 25th, 2023. Eligible benefits include Universal Credit, Pension Credit, Income-based Jobseekers Allowance, Income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support, Working Tax Credit, and Child Tax Credit.

To claim pension credit and receive the £301 Cost of Living Payment, individuals should follow these steps:

  1. Check eligibility: Ensure that you meet the criteria for pension credit. The eligibility criteria include factors such as age, income, accommodation, disability, location, and residency status.Detailed information can be found on the official government website.
  2. Start the application process: There are different ways to apply for pension credit, including paper applications, online applications, and phone-based services. The government’s official website provides clear instructions and guidance on how to initiate the application process.
  3. Provide necessary information: During the application process, you need to provide essential details about your income, savings and investments, deferred pensions, and any other relevant information. Providing accurate and up-to-date information is crucial to ensure a smooth and efficient application process.
  4. Await assessment: Once the application is submitted, the DWP will assess your eligibility for pension credit. The assessment may include verification of your income, assets, and other relevant factors. Being patient during this process is essential as it may take some time.
  5. Receive decision and claim payment: Upon successful assessment and approval, you will be notified of the decision regarding your pension credit claim. If approved, you will receive regular payments directly into your bank accounts, including the additional £301 Cost of Living Payment (banking reference ‘HMRC COLS’).

You can also use the pension credit calculator to estimate how much you will receive if you qualify.

The UK government has emphasized the significance of claiming pension credit promptly to avoid missing out on this valuable support. Minister for Pensions Laura Trott said that she is determined to ensure people who need it receive it and calls for loved ones to check for family members.

“Please check if you or your loved ones can claim for this extra support, and if you do it by May 19th, you could qualify for the £301 Cost of Living Payment – giving another financial boost to those who need it most.”

Payment will be made from now till May 17th. You can fill out a form on the GOV.UK website if you think you are missing a payment after May 17th.

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