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Money Matters: When to expect the final cost of living payment

In this week’s Money Matters column, Wrekin’s Debt and Energy Manager Dan Bebbington sets out when the final cost of living payment will be paid and what other help is out there.

This month will see eligible households receive the third and final cost of living payment for 2023/24.

The payments were introduced to help millions of households struggling with rising bills due to the cost-of-living crisis.

You will be eligible for the payment if you were claiming certain benefits between November 13 and December 12 last year.

The payment of £299 will be sent to you automatically in the same way you receive your other benefits, so you don’t need to do anything. The final cost of living payment follows earlier payments of £301, issued between April and May, and £300, issued between November and December.

This final payment will be issued between February 6 and 22 to people claiming universal credit, job seekers’ allowance, employment and support allowance, income support, pension credit, child tax credit and working tax credit.

However, you will not be eligible for the payment if your benefit was reduced to £0 for the qualifying period.

This could have happened if you earned more than normal, your savings went up, you were sanctioned or if you were paid more than once between the relevant dates.

If you were of state pension age during the qualifying period but weren’t claiming pension credit, it may be worth checking if you are eligible for it.

If you are, you can make a claim for pension credit now and ask for it to be back-dated. If you do this before March 5 and your claim is approved, you will also receive the £299 cost of living payment.

Pension credit can help unlock other financial support such as council tax reductions, so it is well worth checking your eligibility.

Additional payments were also made to people of pension age and those claiming certain disability benefits.

The disability cost of living payment of £150 was issued between June and July.

The pensioner cost of living payment, of either £150 or £300, is being sent out to those who qualify for the winter fuel payment.

Most people born between 25 September 1957 will qualify, and the government says the ‘vast majority’ of payments have now been made.

If you think you should have received any of the payments but didn’t, you should contact the DWP.

The government has said it does not plan to issue any more cost of living payments.

You should also be wary of scam texts or emails asking you to apply for the payments. The DWP will never ask for personal information or bank details in this way.

There also other schemes available to people struggling with the cost of living, such as the Household Support Fund.

The Fund is administered by local authorities in England to help residents in need with the rising cost of food, energy and water bills. To apply, contact your local council.

Wrekin Housing Group customers can also seek free advice and support from our Money Matters team.

6th February 2024