In November 2022, Jeremy Hunt confirmed in his Autumn Statement that much of the cost of living support for vulnerable people in the UK will return in 2023. The country is experiencing a double whammy of skyrocketing energy bills and record high inflation. However, those in receipt of particular benefits from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) could be entitled to a £900 cost of living payment.
Specifically, anyone who claims a means-tested benefit from the Government department may be eligible for this support.
Eligibility for means-tested benefits is based on the amount of income and capital someone has on them.
If someone has a decent and steady household income, they may not be eligible for assistance from the DWP.
However, if they are on low income, they may qualify for certain means-tested support to boost their income.
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The following DWP means-tested benefit payments qualify someone for the £900 in Government cost of living aid:
- Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Universal Credit
- Working Tax Credit
- Child Tax Credit
- Pension Credit.
During 2022, a similar cost of living payment was delivered to means-tested benefit payment claimants to help with cost of living.
Notably, this sum of money came to £650 with the Government making the decision to raise it during last year’s Autumn Statement.
This particular cost of living payment was separated into two instalments with them being paid at different times of the year.
Towards the end of last year, the Government confirmed the £900 sum would be rolled out over three different instalments to claimants.
The first instalment worth £301 will be handed out sometime in Spring 2023 with the following £300 and £299 instalments being delivered in Autumn 2023 and Spring 2024, respectively.
Outside of the £900 for benefit claimants, the Government is also continuing its financial assistance for other vulnerable demographics.
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Notably, pensioners and people with disabilities will get another £300 and £150 in cost of living support, respectively.
Due to older and disabled people being more likely to be out of the workforce, those in these groups may struggle to handle the sharp rise in energy bills and inflation.
These payments were rolled out earlier this year in a bid to mitigate the soaring price hikes being pushed onto consumers.
Disabled people will receive their payment in Summer 2023, while pensioners shall get their sum in Winter 2023/24.
Laura Suter, the head of personal finance at AJ Bell, outlined why these cost of living payments are essential for those on low incomes.
She explained: “All these factors together mean that households are going to have to find more money to pay for their bills this year.
“Inflation is expected to stop its rapid rise upwards in the coming months, but that doesn’t mean prices are going to fall – they will just stop rising so quickly – meaning higher prices are here to stay.
“The new year is a good time to sort through your finances and get them as ship-shape as possible – whether that’s moving expensive debt to a cheaper deal, starting an emergency savings pot or working out a way to bolster your income, all these moves will help to start 2023 on the right foot.”