Are you over State Pension age and struggling to make ends meet? If so, you’re not alone. Millions of people in the UK are over the State Pension age and living on a low income. But there is help available.
Pension Credit is a government benefit that can help with the cost of living, and you may be eligible even if you have other income or savings.
So in this article, we will discuss about Eligibility, Claiming Pension credit at 66, the total amount you get and more. So let’s get started!
Can I Claim Pension Credit?
Pension Credit is a means-tested benefit that helps with the cost of living if you are over State Pension age.
You may be eligible to claim Pension Credit if:
- You are over State Pension age and on a low income.
- You are single or have a partner.
- You have savings or investments, but your income is below certain limits.
- You have housing costs, but your income is below certain limits.
To know more about applying, eligiblity, total payment of Pension Credit and more. Keep Reading!
Can I Claim Pension Credit If I Have Savings?
Yes, you can claim Pension Credit even if you have savings. However, the amount of Pension Credit you receive may be affected by your savings.
If you have £10,000 or less in savings, you will not be affected by your savings when claiming Pension Credit; however, if you have more than £10,000 in savings, every £500 over £10,000 will count as £1 income a week. For example, if you have £11,000 in savings, this counts as £2 income a week.
Who Is Eligible For Pension Credit UK?
To be eligible for Pension Credit in the UK, you must:
- Live in England, Scotland, or Wales.
- Be over the State Pension age, which is currently 66 for both men and women.
- Have a weekly income of less than £201.05 for single people or £306.85 for couples.
When figuring out your income, many things are taken into account, such as:
- Your state pension
- Any other pension savings you have, like a job or private pensions
- Most social security benefits, for example, carer’s allowance
- Any savings or investments worth over £10,000
- Earnings from a job
And the calculation does not include:
- Attendance allowance
- Christmas bonus
- Disability living allowance
- Personal independence payment
- Housing benefit
- Council tax reduction
If your income is too high to get pension credit, you may still be able to get pension credit for your savings, so it’s worth checking.
How Do I Find Out If I Can Claim Pension Credit?
There are a few ways to find out if you can claim Pension Credit. Here are those:
Method 1: Use the Pension Credit Calculator
The Pension Credit calculator is a quick and easy way to find out if you might be eligible for Pension Credit or not. The tool can be used online or over the phone.
Method 2: Speak to a benefits advisor
A benefits expert can help you figure out if you can get Pension Credit and how to apply for it.
Method 3: Call the Pension Service
The Pension Service can help you find out if you are qualified for Pension Credit and how to apply. You can call 0800 991 2345 to talk to the Pension Service.
You will need details of earnings, benefits, pensions, savings and investments, plus the same for your partner if you have one to check your eligibility.
If you think you might be qualified for Pension Credit, you should apply as soon as possible.
How Do I Claim My State Pension At 66?
This year, a lot of people who turn 66 can get extra money to help with everyday bills. You should get a letter inviting you to claim with a specific code. If your 66th birthday is within 3 months and you haven’t gotten a letter, you can ask the Government’s website for an invitation code and apply online.
If you don’t need the extra money right away when you turn 66, you can wait to get it. Your payments will be higher when you do come to claim too.
Becky O’Conner [director of public affairs at PensionBee] said, “Your pension goes up every week you put it off, as long as you put it off for at least nine weeks. For every 9 weeks you wait, it goes up by the same amount as 1%. This works out as just under 5.8% for every 52 weeks.
For example, if you got a state income of £203.85 per week and put it off for 52 weeks, you would get an extra £11.82 per week, for a total of £215.67.
NOTE: Deferring your state pension can impact your entitlement to benefits, as your income will be higher.
To claim, you’ll need your letter’s invitation code and other personal information, such as:
- Date of your most recent marriage, civil partnership or divorce
- Dates of any time spent living or working abroad
- Your bank or building society details
You can also call the Pension Service at 0800 731 7898 to make a claim. Or, you can send any finished forms to Pension Service 8, Post Handling Site B, Wolverhampton, WV98 1AF.
Can I Get The £301 Cost Of Living Payment?
Yes, you may be eligible for the £301 Cost of Living Payment if you are over the State Pension age and receive Pension Credit. You must have made a claim for Pension Credit on or before 19 May 2023. If you are eligible, you will receive the payment directly into your bank account.
It is being paid to people who receive the following benefits:
- Universal Credit
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income-related Employment And Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Pension Credit
- Working Tax Credit
- Child Tax Credit
When Will I Get The First Payment from Pension Credit?
If you are eligible for Pension Credit, You will get your first payment within 5 weeks of your application being processed.
You should receive an email to confirm that your claim has been received. You will also receive a letter from DWP in which the payment date will be mentioned.
If you have any questions about when you will receive your first payment, you can contact the DWP on 0800 99 1234.
When Are The Future Payments?
The remaining 2 payments are as follows:
- 2nd payment during autumn 2023 is £300
- And the 3rd payment will be of £299 which will be given during spring 2023
The slightly different payment amounts make it easier for the DWP and HMRC to keep track of which handouts people have gotten and reduce the risk of fraud.
Is There Further Support For Pensioners?
The payment tops up a person’s weekly income to a minimum of £201.05 for single pensioners and £306.85 for couples or more if the person has a disability or caring responsibilities.
Pension credit can also help people receive other benefits, including housing costs, council tax, or heating bills, and cost-of-living payments.
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Why Is It Important People Register Before The Deadline?
If low-income retirees sign up before the 19 May deadline, they will get a Pension Credit and the latest cost of living payment of £301.
As long as a claim is made before the deadline, it can be backdated for up to 3 months if the person making the claim is qualified to get it during that time.
It would ensure that the person gets not only the most recent cost-of-living payment but also two more payments of about £300 due to low-income people who get certain benefits over the next year.
How To Apply For Pension Credit?
There are 3 ways to apply for Pension Credit in the UK: Online, By Phone and By Post.
- Online: To apply for Pension Credit online, click here to go to the GOV.UK website’s Pension credit applying page.
- By Phone: To apply for pension card By Phone, you can call these numbers:
- Telephone: 0800 99 1234
- Textphone: 0800 169 0133
- By Post: To apply by post, print out and fill in the Pension Credit claim form by clicking here or call the claim line to request a form. And send the claim form to the Pension Service, or ask someone to do it for you:
The Pension Service 8
Post Handling Site B
If you are facing any issue, contact a voluntary organisation like Citizens Advice or Age UK if you need help with the form.
To Apply For Pension Credit, You and your partner need the following information:
- National Insurance Number
- Income And Pensions Information
- Details of money, savings and investments, usually for the last 3 months
You may also be asked for the name, sort code and account number of your bank or building society, depending on how you are applying.