What is a Winter Fuel Payment? An annual tax-free payment made to eligible older people to help towards winter fuel bills.
Eligibility
  • Payable to men and women who have reached women’s state Pension Age and are ordinarily resident in Great Britain or Northern Ireland during the qualifying week (which is the week beginning with the Third Monday in September each year).
  • “For winter 2010/11 people born on or before 5 July 1950 will have reached the qualifying age for a payment”
Exclusions People who cannot get Winter Fuel Payment.

You will not qualify for a payment if, during the qualifying week , you are:

    • In hospital getting free inpatient treatment and have been getting such treatment for more than 52 weeks.

    • In custody serving a sentence imposed by a court.

    • Subject to Immigration Control and not eligible for help from the Dept for Work and Pensions (for example, you have been allowed in to the UK on the understanding that you are supporting yourself and are not entitled to help from public funds)

    • Living in a care home, an independent hospital or Ilford Park Polish Resettlement Home (and have been for the preceding 12 weeks or more), and get Pension Credit, income-based Jobseekers Allowance or income related Employment and Support Allowance.

Couples receiving Pension Credit, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance or income related Employment and Support Allowance will only get one payment made to the person receiving that benefit.

How is it paid? Generally paid automatically:

    • into your bank, building or Post office card account or

    • by cheque, or payable order sent to your address.

Will I have to make a claim?
  • Generally there is no need to claim a Winter Fuel Payment as it is paid automatically.
  • If you get State Pension or other social security benefit (not including Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit or Child Benefit) during the qualifying week, or you got a Winter Fuel Payment last year, you should get a payment automatically between early November and Christmas each year, as long as your details are up to date and you still meet the conditions.
  • If you have not received a payment by Christmas, please call the office that normally pays your benefit or phone the Winter Fuel Payment helpline;

Phone: 0845 915 1515 Text Phone 0845 601 5613

However;

  • If you have not had a Winter Fuel Payment before, do not get benefits or you only get Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit or Child Benefit, you will need to make a claim.

When do I claim?

  • If you need to claim, send us your claim form quickly. If you can get a Winter Fuel Payment and we get your claim by the Friday of the September qualifying week, we can pay you by Christmas. If we receive your claim after this date. we cannot always pay you by Christmas

What if I have savings?

  • Savings do not affect Winter Fuel Payments.

If a customer is not in receipt of a qualifying benefit but feels they may be eligible for a Winter Fuel Payment they can apply but applications for 2009-2010 payments must be received by 30th March 2010.

New arrangements for customers living outside the UK Winter Fuel Payments for customers living in the European Economic Area (EEA) but outside the United Kingdom (UK) are processed
and maintained by the International Pension Centre (IPC) Any customers living in the EEA but outside the UK querying a Winter Fuel Payment should be directed to the following office:

International Pension Centre

Winter Fuel Team

Room TC109, Tyneview Park

Newcastle upon Tyne

NE98 1BA

England

Telephone number: (0191) 21 87777

Fax number: (0191) 21 83389

Text phone: (0191) 21 87280

International code: (+ 44 191)

E-mail: TVP.Internationalqueries@thepensionservice.gsi.gov.uk

Appeal If an applicant wants to know more about a decision or thinks it is wrong they can ask for an explanation. They should do this within one month of the date of decision.

If they think the decision is wrong they can ask us to look at it again. If we cannot change the decision we will tell them why and they can ask for an appeal.

Help-line For additional information regarding Winter Fuel Payments, contact –

    • Telephone 08459 151515

    • Textphone 0845 6015613

All calls charged at local rate, lines open 8.30am – 4.30pm, Monday to Friday