Universal Credit: Employment and self-employment impacts Cold Weather Payment eligibility

Cold Weather Payments: Guide to government-run scheme

The Cold Weather Payment scheme runs from November 1 to March 31 each winter. Eligible people will get the £25 payment if the average temperature in the area is recorded as, or forecast to be, zero degrees celsius or below over seven days in a row.

The money, for each seven day period, is usually paid automatically.

After the period of very cold weather in the area, the recipient should get the payment within 14 working days.

It is paid into the same bank or building society account as the person’s benefit payments.

Cold Weather Payments don’t affect their other benefits, however.

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Who is eligible for a Cold Weather Payment?

A person is eligible if they get certain benefits – and meet the specific eligibility rules – or they receive Support for Mortgage Interest.

Some Universal Credit claimants can qualify, but not all will.

The DWP has summed up the eligibility rules in two different lists.

They explained it may be a person is eligible if they get:

  • Universal Credit – if they are not employed or self-employed
  • Income Support
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Pension Credit
  • Support for Mortgage Interest

Additionally, they must meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • Be in receipt of a disability or pension premium
  • Have a child under five living with them
  • Be in receipt of Child Tax Credit that includes a disability or severe disability element
  • Have a health condition or disability and have limited capability for work.
  • Be in the work-related activity group or support group
  • Have a severe or enhanced disability premium
  • Have a disabled child in the household – if the person is receiving Universal Credit then they will receive a CWP where this applies, whether they are working or not.

Who is eligible for Universal Credit?

Universal Credit is replacing six legacy benefits.

These are Child Tax Credit, Housing Benefit, Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), and Working Tax Credit.

It may be a person can get it if:

  • You may be able to get Universal Credit if:
  • They’re on a low income or out of work
  • They’re 18 or over (there are some exceptions if they’re 16 to 17)
  • They or their partner is under state pension age
  • They and their partner have £16,000 or less in savings between them
  • They live in the UK.

If a person isn’t eligible, they can use a benefits calculator to see if they qualify for other benefits.

It is made up of a monthly standard allowance, which depends on the age and relationship status of the claimant.

Some may also get additional amounts.

Examples of this include if the person has children, needs help paying their rent, or has a disability or health condition which prevents them from working.

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