MILLIONS of struggling households will soon get a cash pay out worth hundreds of pounds to help with rising bills.
Here’s how you can get the £650 payment and all the support you can claim to get through the cost of living crisis.
£650 cost of living payment
Eight million households on means-tested benefits will get a £650 cost of living payment.
The payments will go to everyone on means-tested benefits, 包括普遍信用, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), income support, Pension Credit, working tax credit and child tax credit.
Read more on benefits
The Department for Work and Pensions will make the payment in two lump sums, These are both tax-free and won’t affect your benefits, or count towards the benefit cap.
The first will come from July 14 as a separate payment to your normal benefit amount, and then a second installment will follow some time in Autumn.
You will need to be on eligible benefits or have begun a successful claim which is later, as of May 25 2022 to get the first payment.
If you have a joint claim with a partner, both of you will get one payment of £650.
It’s not the only cost of living payment you might get this year.
Some households on low incomes could be eligible for a discount on their council tax bill.
As one of the biggest bills for households and the worst consequences if you get behind, finding out if you can get a reduction could help you get by.
In some cases you could even get your bill reduced to zero and with the average bill for a band D home at £1,898, that could save a a significant sum.
To find out if you’re eligible and apply you’ll need to contact your local council – you can find yours using the gov.uk tool, just enter your postcode.
Energy bill help
Several suppliers offer energy bill help through hardship funds and give out grants worth as much as £750 and you don’t have to repay the cash.
British Gas just added and extra £2millionto its Energy Trust fund to help struggling customers.
You’ll need to contact your supplier directly to see what they offer and eligibility and how much you get can vary between them.
周围有 8,000 charities and organisations in the UK that offer cash to help struggling families.
Turn2Us has a free grants search tool so you can find out what help is available to you.
这 Household Support Fund, which helps families with the rising cost of living, has been extended.
This could include cash grants to pay bills or cover food costs – the help will depend on where you live.
To find out what support is available in your area, contact your local council.
Water saving devices and bill help
Many water companies offer free water-saving devices that shave pounds off your bills.
Contact your supplier. Freebies include shower timers and buffalo bags, which save water with every flush. 查看 savewatersavemoney.co.uk.
Large families on Universal Credit or other benefits may be eligible for a cap on their bills under the WaterSure scheme.
To qualify for the scheme you need to already have a water meter installed, and prove you need to use a lot of water.
You also need to have three or more children under the age of 19 living in the house, and receive child benefit for them.
You can find out more about the scheme in our guide.
Free school meals
If you’re claiming certain benefits including Universal Credit, JSA and Child Tax Credit then your child might be entitled to free school meals.
You will need to apply through your local authority so that they can apply for extra funding from the Government, while some councils ask you to contact the school directly.
Simply 点击这里 and type in your postcode to be redirected to your local council’s website and apply.
The exact amount you’ll get depends on where you are, but ranges from around £2.15 to £2.50 per day, or around £400-£500 each school year.
Over Easter some councils are giving out cash to help parents during the school holidays, 和 some dishing out £50 vouchers for supermarkets.
Free £150 for school uniforms
How much you can get in England to help pay for school uniforms varies depending on where you live, but you can get up to £150 in some local authorities.
As a general rule, those on income support, [object Window], JSA, child tax credit, ESA, and pension tax credit are entitled to support under Part IV of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999.
You may also be eligible if your annual income is less than £16,190.
To apply, you need to put in your postcode on the Gov.uk 网站, which will direct you to your council’s website where you should search for “uniform grant” in the “Education” section to find out what help is available in your area.
Free £500 if you’re pregnant
You may be able to get a one off payment worth £500 to help towards the costs of having a child through the Sure Start Maternity Grant.
You don’t have to pay it back and you can find out who’s eligible in our guide.
You’ll qualify for the grant if you’re already claiming benefits and you’re expecting your first child, or expecting twins or triplets and have children already.
New parents must claim the grant within 11 weeks of the baby’s due date or within six months after the baby is born.
To claim, you’ll need to print out and fill in the Sure Start Maternity Grant (SF100) claim form.
A health professional such as a doctor or midwife must also sign it before you post it to Freepost DWP SSMG.
Free milk, fruit and veg
这 Healthy Start scheme offers thousands of parents on low incomes help to feed their kids.
You get a prepaid card and payments worth up to £442 a year for those claiming certain benefits.
You can start getting the cash from 10 weeks pregnant up to when the child turns four.
The card can be used at major supermarkets and shops to but the following:
- cow’s milk
- 新鲜的, frozen or tinned fruit and vegetables
- infant formula milk
- 新鲜的, dried, and tinned pulses
Check out how to apply for the Healthy Start scheme in our guide.
Free travel and childcare when looking for work
The Restart Scheme is designed to help those who’ve been on Universal Credit for more than a year and launched last year.
It can help cover the costs associated with finding a job, including travel, childcare and other expenses.
If you’re on the scheme ask the provider or your work coach about how to claim.
The Flexible Support Fund is a pot of money that has been put aside by the government to help you with the costs of getting a job.
The fund is managed by local job centres and can be used to cover the following costs of job hunting:
- Training for a job, up to £150
- Travel to interviews
- Tools for work
- Cost of medical evidence required by a disabled person
- Clothing and uniforms to start work
- Support for single parents in financial emergencies in the first 26 weeks of starting a job.
这 Jobcentre Plus travel card is available for free and cuts the cost of travelling on public transport, including buses and trains, 经过 50%.
In London, they’re accepted by Transport For London (光纤到户), and here, users can save money by purchasing a seven-day or monthly travel card at a child’s rate.
But the discount card is only available to those who are unemployed and looking for work, and those who claim JSA.
You’re also entitled to one if you’ve been claiming Universal Credit for three to nine months and are aged between 18 和 24.
You’ll need to have been claiming benefits for three to 12 months before getting the card if you’re 25 and older.
All train operators in England, Scotland and Wales accept the discount and cards are valid for up to three months.
But just because you’re on benefits, it doesn’t mean you’ll automatically get one – they’re handed out by Jobcentre staff on a case-by-case basis at the discretion of the work coaches.
To find out if you qualify for the boost, speak to your work coach at your nearest Jobcentre, which you can find via Gov.uk.
If you claim Universal Credit, you might be able to get a refund on most of your childcare costs.
You can claim back 85% of childcare costs up to £646 for one child or £1,108 for two or more up to August 31 following the child’s 16th birthday.
You will have to pay your childcare costs yourself up front and then claim the money back through Universal Credit.
The Sun has been calling on the government to change rules and pay parents up-front for childcare costs, 马丁刘易斯解释了如何在圣诞节及时获得 130 英镑的免费现金 [object Window].
Parents may also be able to take advantage of other childcare support, whether you’re claiming Universal Credit or not, including up to 30 hours free childcare
Up to £1,200 bonus for saving
Not everyone is in a position to save, but of you are it’s worth getting a specific account that offers a generous bonus.
With the Help to Save account, anyone on Universal Credit can put away between £1 and £50 every month and you get a 50% bonus on top.
If you save the maximum amount over four years you can get a sum of £1,200 from the government, topping up your own savings of £2,400.
But you can still get some of the bonus even by saving a small amount – check out how it works.
Free prescriptions and dental treatment
You could also get help with covering health costs, such as paying for your prescriptions and dental treatment.
To claim, you’ll need to show a copy of your Universal Credit award notice.
You won’t be able to claim on health costs before you were deemed eligible for the Universal Credit.
If you’re entitled to claim, you could get free NHS prescriptions, dental treatment, sight tests, wigs and fabric supports.
NHS prescriptions currently cost £9.15 in the UK.
You could also get help with the cost of glasses and contact lenses and money for travel costs for treatment.
The NHS has outlined more information on how to go about claiming 这里.
Are you getting all the benefits you’re entitled to? If you’re missing out and start claiming it could boost your income too.
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