THE government is expected to unveil new cost of living payments for struggling households under the Autumn Statement.
The statement, coming this Thursday, could put the most vulnerable in line for a £1,100 boost.
Brits who claim benefits will be the main group affected by the payments.
Mr Sunak has vowed to protect the poorest as he prepares to strip back energy bill support and let heating costs rise.
But this is not certain, and confirmed new payments will be announced during the Statement on Thursday.
Who will get the cost of living payments?
Eight million households currently get cost of living payments worth up to £650, but eligibility criteria could change under any new rules.
At the moment, you’re eligible if you claim the following:
- Universal Credit
- Job Seeker’s Allowance
- Employment and Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Pension Credit
- Child Tax Credit
- Working Tax Credit.
You’ll receive this if:
- you were born on or before 25 September 1956
- you lived in the UK for at least one day during the week of 19 to 25 September 2022 in what is known as the “qualifying week”
While people with disabilities getting a £150 one-off payment will need to receive one of the following:
- Attendance Allowance
- Constant Attendance Allowance
- Disability Living Allowance for adults
- Disability Living Allowance for children
- Personal Independence Payment
- Adult Disability Payment (in Scotland)
- Child Disability Payment (in Scotland)
- Armed Forces Independence Payment
- War Pension Mobility Supplement
However, the eligibility criteria could change for any of these on Thursday.
What help is on offer now?
The scheme is where eligible households can get £150 off their electricity bill each winter – but you’ll have to wait until the colder months to get the money off.
Households in England and Wales don’t need to apply to get the cash and they’ll automatically qualify if they are receiving certain benefits.
You can read more about who’s eligible here.
There’s a few hardship funds you might be entitled to through you energy supplier.
Contact them and ask to see what is available, though the application process is very in-depth.
You could earn up to £1,500 from the British Gas fund, for instance.
There’s also the cold weather payment, which starts from November 1 onwards and continues through the winter months.
Temperatures drop dramatically from November to February, so it should help people heat their homes more comfortably.
You get £25 for each seven-day period where the weather is below zero Celsius on average during this time frame.
You can check if your area has had a cold weather payment by popping your postcode into the government’s tool now.
You can check if you’re eligible here first.
Most payments are made automatically in November or December. You should be paid by 13 January 2023, so keep an eye on your bank account.
There’s also a Universal Credit bonus this December – millions of claimants could get a free £10 bonus to help them over the festive period.