Universal Credit and PIP claimants to get Christmas Bonus
Autumn Statement: Hunt announces rise in Universal Credit
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Low income households are currently facing a double whammy of rising energy bills and inflation at a 41-year high. Since last month, gas and electricity costs have risen by 27 percent and the UK’s inflation rate is at 11.1 percent. The Government has recently announced another cost of living payment for those on means-tested benefits, including Universal Credit and PIP claimants, worth £900 will be paid next year, but further support will be available ahead of Christmas.
What is the Christmas Bonus?
This support for those on Universal Credit and PIP is a one-off payment which is tax-free and made before Christmas.
It is usually paid to people who get certain benefits in the qualifying week, which is normally the first week of December.
Claimants of Universal Credit or PIP do not need to apply for the Government’s Christmas Bonus; it will be automatically paid to them.
All Christmas Bonus payments will be awarded to the bank or building society account to which DWP support is sent too.
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How much is the bonus?
People on qualifying benefit payments from the DWP will be able to get a £10 boost to their payments in the month of December.
Receiving this financial support will not affect someone’s existing claim to a payment or how much they get.
Payments will usually appear as “DWP XB” once they finally appear on a benefit claimant’s bank statement.
Who is eligible for the Christmas Bonus?
In order to get the £10 Christmas Bonus, claimants need to be present or ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man or Gibraltar during the qualifying week.
According to the DWP, the following benefit payments and pensions entitled someone to the £10 Christmas Bonus:
- Adult Disability Payment
- Armed Forces Independence Payment
- Attendance Allowance
- Carer’s Allowance
- Child Disability Payment
- Constant Attendance Allowance (paid under Industrial Injuries or War Pensions schemes)
- Contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance (once the main phase of the benefit is entered after the first 13 weeks of claim)
- Disability Living Allowance
- Incapacity Benefit at the long-term rate
- Industrial Death Benefit
- Mobility Supplement
- Pension Credit – the guarantee element
- Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
- State Pension (including Graduated Retirement Benefit)
- Severe Disablement Allowance (transitionally protected)
- Unemployability Supplement or Allowance (paid under Industrial Injuries or War Pensions schemes)
- War Disablement Pension at State Pension age
- War Widow’s Pension
- Widowed Mother’s Allowance
- Widowed Parent’s Allowance
- Widow’s Pension.
It should be noted that if someone has not claimed their state pension and is not eligible for one of the other qualifying benefits, they will not be able to get the Christmas Bonus.
With the cost of living crisis looking likely to continue for the foreseeable future, experts are encouraging people to apply for any support they may be eligible for.
Paul Brennan, the director of Benefit Answers, broke down the importance of claimants receiving payments they are entitled to.
Mr Brennan explained: “We’ve seen a case where a pensioner couple had been underpaid £200 per week for years. Eventually, they were back-paid a lump sum of £15,000.”
but have not got it, should contact the Jobcentre Plus office or office that deals with your payments.
Alternatively, those on the state pension or another pension payment should reach out to the Pension Service.
Further cost of living payments are being made available to pensioners and those with a disability next year.
All benefit payments, including Universal Credit and PIP, are set to receive a 10.1 percent rate hike in April 2023.
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