State Benefits For Pensioners.
There are various state benefits for Pensioners yet in 2022 it was estimated that well over £5 billion pounds went unclaimed. When the cost of living has sky-rocketed in recent months these missed payments may help soften the blow. It is understood that just under half of all Pensioners are missing out on age-related benefits. These are state benefits for Pensioners in addition to their basic state pension. Many are unaware of the fact they can claim state benefits for Pensioners whilst others are too proud to.
It’s little wonder so many state benefits for pensioners go unclaimed. It is a minefield to navigate the applications. However, there is help at hand from organisations such as Age UK. There should be someone available to talk you through the process of applying for state benefits so please don’t miss out.
What the State Benefits for Pensioners are available?
In addition to the state pension, claims can be made for:
Pension Credit falls into two categories
1 – Guaranteed credits
2 -Savings credits.
The guaranteed credit element tops up the weekly income of a state pensioner to a minimum of £201.05 for individuals or £306.85 for a couple.
The savings credits are given to pensioners who have a small amount of savings but live on low incomes. This provides an extra weekly income of and is up to £15.94 for an individual and £17.84 per couple. Age UK recommends applying for Pension credit because if you only receive a small amount it is what is known as a “gateway benefit”. It will entitle you to receive other benefits such as Housing Benefit and council tax support.
There is also a pension credit helpline. It is a freephone number 0800 991 234. You can also use this number to apply for this benefit.
If you pay rent and your income is below a specified level you may be eligible for Housing Benefit. This is claimed through the local council and can help with housing costs and service charges in shared communal areas. You can receive housing benefit if you are in the private rental sector, housing association or council property.
Council Tax Support for Pensioners
If a pensioner qualifies for the guaranteed pension credit they could also be entitled to council tax support. Pensioners with minimal savings may also qualify. This benefit is means-tested and based on total household income. Claims are made through your local council offices.
If a pensioner requires assistance with daily tasks such as washing, dressing and preparing meals they may qualify for Attendance Allowance. Attendance Allowance is currently still not means tested and is tax-free. You don’t have to have a carer and you are able to decide how best to use the money to help you. If you are in a care home and paying for this yourself you can still receive Attendance Allowance. If your care is funded by the local authority you won’t be eligible.
Attendance allowance rates are currently £68.10 per week if you need help during the day or the night. This is known as the lower rate. If you need help around the clock then the higher rate is payable which is £101.75 per week. The Government paid an additional £150 to each individual receiving Attendance Allowance in 2022 and there is a second payment of £150 due this Summer.
Winter Fuel Payments
Winter Fuel Payments are paid to anyone born before the 26th of September 1956. (How do they decide on these dates? ) This payment should be automatic. If you didn’t receive a confirmation letter, it is worth chasing up. If you live alone or with someone who doesn’t receive the payment you will receive £500 if you were born before 26/9/1956 or £600 if born before 26/9/1942.
There are other State Benefits for Pensioners for specific conditions too.
More information can be obtained at Gov.Uk or any online from Age UK