First cost of living payment received by millions

Payments to support those struggling with the cost of living are starting to be paid into eight million people’s accounts from today.

The first instalment of £326 is aimed at those on a variety of benefits and tax credits.

For low-income households on means-tested benefits, money will be automatically placed in their bank, building society or credit union account.

Those eligible will receive the second instalment of £324 in the autumn. All who qualify should be paid automatically, meaning there is no need to apply.

These are the biggest in a range of payments created to help with rising costs. Particularly, these will aid in dealing with surging energy bills, but recipients can spend or save the money how they choose.

A spokesman for the Department for Work and Pensions commented on the support:

“All eligible households will automatically receive the first instalment, and no one needs to worry they will miss out.

“There will be a few unique cases – such as those who were not initially entitled but have gained entitlement upon appeal – who will be paid after July, as soon as possible.”

What other payments are being introduced?

Aside from the main cost of living payment, worth £650 in total, the support being offered later in the year also includes:

• The £300 pensioner payment, aimed at those who receive the winter fuel payment
• The £150 disability payment, aimed at those on non-means-tested disability benefits.

Those eligible can expect to receive the disability cost of living payment from September, with the pensioner payment coming in November.

Who qualifies for the main payment?

On estimate, about 8.2 million households are eligible for the main cost of living payment. To qualify, you must be receiving one of the following benefits:
• Universal credit
• Income-based jobseeker’s allowance (JSA)
• Income-related employment and support allowance (Esa)
• Income support
• Pension credit
• Child tax credit
• Working tax credit.

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