MSE News: Winter fuel payments: how to get them and are you eligible?

edited 29 August 2013 at 4:25PM in Benefits & Tax Credits
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Former_MSE_HelenFormer_MSE_Helen Former MSE
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edited 29 August 2013 at 4:25PM in Benefits & Tax Credits
This is the discussion thread for the following MSE News Story:

"Most people aged over 60 can apply now to get help towards their winter energy costs from the Government ..."
Read the full story:

Winter fuel payments: how to get them and are you eligible?



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  • tgroom57tgroom57 Forumite
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    Point 9. from the newsletter
    ....Plus those on pension credit, income support or jobseekers' get £25 per 7 days the temp's below 0°C.

    They don't. They have to be also disabled or have a child.

    See full T&C at Direct.gov (your link)
    I know, because last winter me an' the cat froze our nuts off.
  • MiddyMiddy
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    I think the winter fuel payments need to be paid in Feb/March when the winter quarter bills are produced. I have heard so many pensioners buying Christmas presents, meals out etc with this money and when the bill does arrive, they have no money to pay it.
  • seven-day-weekendseven-day-weekend Forumite
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    Middy wrote: »
    I think the winter fuel payments need to be paid in Feb/March when the winter quarter bills are produced. I have heard so many pensioners buying Christmas presents, meals out etc with this money and when the bill does arrive, they have no money to pay it.


    If they use the money to buy Christmas presents, then they will have more money left in the spring to pay the winter fuel bill. It works out the same in the end!

    Most people pay monthly anyway, so the WFA goes into the general expenses pot.
    (AKA HRH_MUngo)
    Member #10 of £2 savers club
    Imagine someone holding forth on biology whose only knowledge of the subject is the Book of British Birds, and you have a rough idea of what it feels like to read Richard Dawkins on theology: Terry Eagleton
  • carlislelasscarlislelass Forumite
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    Got our letter saturday, money in account today...now taken out and split between gas/ electric.
  • MiddyMiddy
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    If they use the money to buy Christmas presents, then they will have more money left in the spring to pay the winter fuel bill. It works out the same in the end!

    Most people pay monthly anyway, so the WFA goes into the general expenses pot.

    Sadly, many people that receive WFA aren't very MSE and don't pay their energy bills by DD. They receive quarterly bills. My mum's friend is 72 and doesn't have a single direct debit on her bank account. For the council tax, she drives the 10 miles to the district council's offices and pays in cash every month! Then earlier this year when her winter quarter gas bill arrived it was £320 and said that she couldn't afford it. Mum asked what did she do with the WFA. She replied with spending it on her two grandaughters!

    When any of my parents or myself suggest doing things by direct debit, its like talking to a brick wall!
  • edited 17 November 2011 at 1:37AM
    Jennifer_JaneJennifer_Jane Forumite
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    edited 17 November 2011 at 1:37AM
    Middy wrote: »
    Sadly, many people that receive WFA aren't very MSE and don't pay their energy bills by DD. They receive quarterly bills. My mum's friend is 72 and doesn't have a single direct debit on her bank account. For the council tax, she drives the 10 miles to the district council's offices and pays in cash every month! Then earlier this year when her winter quarter gas bill arrived it was £320 and said that she couldn't afford it. Mum asked what did she do with the WFA. She replied with spending it on her two grandaughters!

    When any of my parents or myself suggest doing things by direct debit, its like talking to a brick wall!

    Middy, I think you'll find that this is your experience and that I could say that 'Many people' DO use the WFA for their fuel bills (as seven-day-weekend says - it goes into the expenses 'pot'). And 'many people' I know do pay by DD.

    Can you give some more verifiable statistics than 'Many'?
  • MiddyMiddy
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    Middy, I think you'll find that this is your experience and that I could say that 'Many people' DO use the WFA for their fuel bills (as margaretclare says - it goes into the expenses 'pot'). And 'many people' I know do pay by DD.

    Can you give some more verifiable statistics than 'Many'?

    My grandmother lives in warden controlled housing and there are 35-40 flats in the block. She knows all of them by name and they talk about anything. She and one other have direct debits for energy and the rest pay by quarterly bill. They were all moaning about them unable to pay the bill.

    Also have a friend that works in the post office as a counter assistant and a cousin that works for a bank as a cashier say that the elder customers pay their bills over the counter.

    My dad has helped my grandmother filling in direct debit mandates etc.

    Some elder people don't like change and therefore don't shop around for the best deals.
  • thorsoakthorsoak Forumite
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    I have oil-fired central heating and have to pay "upfront" for oil - so when I do receive the WFA (the last two years, we received it around 20th November) I know that I can order a top-up on the oil (500 litres = around £300) which will keep me through the winter. I know a lot of people on oil-fired heating who do this - or those on solid fuel or wood burners then top-up their supplies.

    We aren't all on gas or electric CH!
  • Middy wrote: »
    My grandmother lives in warden controlled housing and there are 35-40 flats in the block. She knows all of them by name and they talk about anything. She and one other have direct debits for energy and the rest pay by quarterly bill. They were all moaning about them unable to pay the bill.

    Also have a friend that works in the post office as a counter assistant and a cousin that works for a bank as a cashier say that the elder customers pay their bills over the counter.

    My dad has helped my grandmother filling in direct debit mandates etc.

    Some elder people don't like change and therefore don't shop around for the best deals.


    Middy, it's still highly anecdotal and not statistically significant in any way - how many people of these are not using the WFA for fuel? I think that was your contention, wasn't it? :)
  • Candy53Candy53 Forumite
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    My husband is 60 next year, and I went to the Direct Gov site, and others, and they go by the year you are born. It said that my husband wasn't eligable for it until he was 65.

    So when you say 'over 60' does that mean 65 - pensionable age?

    Candy
    What goes around, comes around.
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