Therese Coffey outlines the benefits of Pension Credit scheme
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Pension Credit could provide a valuable weekly income top up for those who have reached state pension age, which is currently 66, and who are on lower incomes. It could also open the door to many other benefits.
How much is it?
Pension Credit tops up people’s weekly income to:
- £177.10 for single pensioners
- A joint amount of £270.30 for couples.
This top up is known as the ‘Guarantee Credit’ element of Pension Credit.
It may also be possible to get additional amounts, depending on an individual’s circumstances.
For example, someone with a severe disability may get an extra £67.30 a week.
To qualify for the additional amount, a person must get one of the following benefits:
- Attendance Allowance
- The middle or highest rate from the care component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
- The daily living component of Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
- Armed Forces Independence Payment
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People who have caring responsibilities for another adult may also be entitled to an additional income boost
An individual could get an extra £37.70 a week if they:
- Get Carer’s Allowance
- Have claimed Carer’s Allowance but are not being paid it because they already get another benefit which pays a larger amount
In a situation where both partners in a couple have claimed or are getting Carer’s Allowance, both parties may be able to claim this extra income.
Those who are responsible for a child or young person might get an additional amount as well.
Britons could get an extra £65.10 per week for the first child they care for, providing they were born before April 6, 2017.
They can get £54.60 a week for any other child or young person they are responsible for.
The child or young person must normally live with the Pension Credit claimant and be younger than 20.
Pensioners could qualify for help with their housing costs through Pension Credit, and get an extra level of income as a result.
This could cover:
- Ground rent for leasehold properties
- Some service charges
- Charges for tents and site rents
Other help may also be available, such as Council Tax Reduction, Housing Benefit and Support for Mortgage Interest.
People who do not qualify for Guarantee Credit but still require some support may be able to get the Savings Credit element of Pension Credit instead.
This could provide up to £14.04 a week for single pensioners and £15.71 a week for couples.
Pension Credit claimants are automatically eligible for other benefits, such as:
- Cold Weather Payments
- Help with NHS costs
- A free TV licence for those aged 75 or over.
How to claim
Those wanting to claim can do so online via the Government website, or alternatively by calling the Pension Credit claim line on 0800 99 1234.
It is also possible to claim by post after printing off an application form or requesting one over the phone.
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