Government should ensure Cold Weather Payments are made

Government needs to ensure Cold Weather Payments make it to those most in need. Sanjay encourages Angus pensioners to check if they are eligible.

With the cold weather returning to Angus over the weekend, I want to remind pensioners that they may be eligible for Cold Weather Payments. However I am disappointed that up to 3,000 pensioners in Angus may miss out on the payment due to the complicated application process.

Cold Weather Payments are due if the temperature drops below zero on seven consecutive days. A payment of £25 is due for each week. Through the cold spell at the beginning of the year, this was triggered 3 times across large parts of Angus.

However, pensioners must have applied for the Pensions Credit to get the payments automatically and current estimates suggest that up to 1/3 of pensioners may not have done so, leaving 3,000 of Angus’s most vulnerable residents unpaid.

It is a scandal that pensioners on the breadline are missing out on these payments. Fuel prices are at an all time high, making Cold Weather Payments all the more important to people already struggling on a poverty pension.

Labour has failed pensioners by creating a complicated system that makes it difficult for them to get the help they desperately need. The Government should be making every effort to identify pensioners who are missing out and get them this extra cash.

Sanjay encouraged pensioners who believe they may be eligible to call their Pensions Office free on 0800 99 1234 or textphone 0800 169 0133. Alternatively they can send a letter to The Pension Service, PO Box 3, Edinburgh, EH91 5AF. Silver surfers can contact them online by clicking here to go to The Pensions Service Contact Form.

Angus residents on other benefits may also be due to receive cold weather payments and they can find out if they are eligible online by clicking here for the Government Direct Website information on Cold Weather Payments or alternatively contact their local Job Centre.