Are you missing out on Pension Credit?

Pension Credit is worth £1,000s and often entitles you to a free TV licence, Council Tax discounts, and more. However, 1 million households are failing to claim pension credit. Are you missing out?

Pension Credit is worth an average of £60 per week, which can make a substantial difference to your income. Claiming makes you eligible for discounts on several other bills, some of which will rise in April. Claiming Pension Credit also makes you entitled to heating help when it’s very cold.

It’s important to remember, Pension Credit is not automatic. Around 1 million eligible people don’t claim, make sure you don’t miss out. Just because you have some income, doesn’t mean you’re not eligible. You could be on a low income, or be a carer, and still receive Pension Credit.

How much could you get?

Pension Credit can be worth around £3,000 per year on average. State pension tops up pensions, savings income and work. If you’re a single person earning less than £173.75 per week, or a couple earning less than £265.20 per week, then you could claim Pension Credit.

If you or your loved one has been financially affected by COVID-19, for example if you are shielding or in care, you may also be entitled to claim Pension Credit.

What other benefits are there?

As we mentioned earlier, Pension Credit can also make you eligible for other discounts.

With the cold weather we’ve been having, and will likely continue to have, there are two crucial additional benefits. Cold Weather Payments worth £25 per week, and Warm Home Discounts worth £140 per year. We’ve all been spending more time indoors lately which will mean most of us are using more energy, so these discounts can have a huge impact on your energy bills.

Other benefits include;

  • Free TV licence for over 75s. Currently worth £157.50 per year, rising to £159 per year from April.
  • Council Tax reduction. Typically worth around £1,000 per year. Many councils are expected to raise rates in April.
  • Free dental care, potentially worth £100s.
  • Voucher for glasses or contact lenses. Worth between £39 and £215 depending on your prescription.
  • Housing benefit, worth £1,000s per year for some.

For a full rundown of all of the benefits of Pension Credit, visit MoneySavingExpert.com.

Pension Credit in action

Age UK North Tyneside recently helped Pat claim for several benefits and were able to increase her Pension Credit.

Their Information & Advice Officer initially visited with Pat to help make claims for Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support. While there, the adviser noticed that Pat might also qualify for Attendance Allowance (AA). The adviser also explained that a successful AA claim would lead to an increase in Pat’s Pension Credit.

Pat was a little sceptical at first as she had been informed by other people that she wouldn’t qualify for AA, but the adviser convinced her there was no harm in trying, and a further visit was booked to claim this for Pat.

The claim for Attendance Allowance was successful and Pat was awarded the higher rate which gave a weekly amount of £89.15. This was backdated which meant she had some money in her bank account for the first time in a while.

As explained by the adviser, Pat now qualified for extra money on her Pension Credit which was an additional £66.95 paid weekly. There was also another backdated amount for this.

How to claim

Pension credit is not automatic, so you must claim. Age UK North Tyneside can help you or your loved on claim pension credit, and also provide you with a free benefit check over the phone. This will ensure you aren’t missing out on other support that you’re entitled to. For your free benefit check, call their Customer Service Team on 0191 280 8484 Option 1.

For all of your loved one’s care needs, including home care and respite services, call EveryDay Care & Support on 0191 287 7028.

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If you’re thinking about accessing support for yourself or a loved one, we’re here to help whether you’d like more information, need some advice or want to discuss the support available.

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