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Universal Credit is tailored to individual claimant’s circumstances and as such, additional payments may be provided for certain living costs. Additionally, claimants may be able to receive cold weather payments as the winter months approach.
Cold weather payments are paid out if the average temperature in the claimant’s area if recorded as, or forecast to be, zero degrees Celsius or below over the course of a week.
Claimants will receive £25 for each seven day period of very cold weather between November 1 and March 31.
This payment should arrive within 14 working days and it’ll be paid into the same bank or building society account that the person involved receives their benefit payments.
It should be noted that cold weather payments do not affect the other benefits that the claimant may be receiving.
Universal Credit claimants will usually get cold weather payments if they’re not employed or self-employed.
One of the following must also apply:
- The claimant has a health condition or disability and has limited capability for work (with or without work-related activity)
- They have a child under five living with them
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Where a person is eligible, they will not need to claim the payment as it will be paid out automatically.
To be eligible for Universal Credit initially, a person must be:
- On a low income or out of work
- Ages between 18 and state pension age
- Have less than £16,000 in savings
- Living in the UK
Universal Credit payments will vary from person to person but there are monthly standard allowances in place which everyone will receive as a minimum.
Single claimants aged under 25 will get £342.72 per month as a minimum.
This will increase to £409.89 for single claimants aged 25 or over.
Claimants in couples will receive £488.59 per month for both if both are under 25, with this rising to £594.04 if either of them is aged 25 or over.
Initial claims can be made online and if a person is living with their partner they must apply as a couple.
Claimants will need to have certain information ready when making a claim, including banking details, contact information and details of costs.
People who need help with a claim can contact a dedicated helpline for assistance.
There is also a help to claim service available that can help claimant’s which is provided for free by Citizens Advice.
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