Pensions, Universal Credit and other payment rates from April 2022
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With the cost of living soaring in 2021, people will be hoping that 2022 will be a better year financially. Already experts are calling it the ‘year of the squeeze’, but there are some things cash strapped Britons can do to make their income stretch.
People on benefits can often get their prescriptions for free as well as discounts on fuel bills and additional financial help that they might not be aware of, especially if they are claiming for the first time.
Below is a full list of additional benefits that people on state benefits can usually get for free.
What do people on Universal Credit, Jobseeker’s Allowance and Pension Credit get for free?
- Free prescriptions
- Free dental treatment
- Eye tests and discounted glasses
- Free school transport
- Free school meals
- Discounted childcare costs
- £150 towards school uniforms – dependent on the local authority
- £1,200 free cash as part of the Government’s Help to Save scheme
- Healthy Start scheme food vouchers
- Maternity grant up to £1,000
- Disabled Facilities Grant (up to £30,000)
- Green Homes Scheme: Homeowners can apply for up to £10,000 to pay for a boiler or double glazing
- Up to £300 in Winter Fuel Payments
- Free wigs or fabric support provided by the NHS
- Free or reduced council tax bills
- Capped water bills
- Half price bus or rail fares
- Free or discounted gym membership
- Help with new costs associated with starting a new job
- £140 Warm Home Discount SchemeCold Weather Payments
- Free or cheap broadband from TalkTalk, Virgin Media and BT
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The latest figures from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) show that Universal Credit is claimed by more than 5.8 million people in the UK and 40 percent of these are in work.
To enquire about these additional benefits, Britons are advised to leave a note in their Universal Credit journal or speak to their local benefits office.
They should also check that they are getting all the government benefits they are entitled to such as Universal Credit or Pension Credit as £15billion goes unclaimed every year.
What’s more, a million pensioners are estimated to be missing out on Pension Credit which can help them survive from month to month and enable them to claim things like a free TV licence.
Despite these figures, the DWP says that nearly two million households claiming Universal Credit are seeing in the New Year with more money in their pockets.
It made some changes at the end of 2021 which saw the Universal Credit taper rate cut to 55 percent.
Together with the increase in existing work allowances by £500 per year, the changes mean many households will be £1,000 a year better off on average.
One person now seeing the benefit of these changes is Gareth, who lives in London and works part-time.
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Together with his partner, their household income was £1,058 in their last assessment period.
Under the old taper of 63 percent, their Universal Credit would have been reduced by £667, but thanks to the new taper of 55 percent, they are £85 better off.
Minister for Welfare Delivery David Rutley said: “These changes are already making a real difference by ensuring workers like Gareth keep more of what they earn.
“The taper rate reduction is a huge tax cut for the low paid, and further proof that this Government is fully behind working families as we enter the new year.”
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