The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has recently announced changes regarding the third installment of the cost of living payment, specifically aimed at individuals relying on means-tested benefits such as Universal Credit. The DWP revised the payment date on October 13, affecting individuals receiving income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), Income Support, Pension Credit, Universal Credit, and tax credits. Initially, recipients were given £301 between April 25 and May 17, with a second payment of £300 scheduled between October 31 and November 19.
The third payment, part of the total £900 aid, was originally anticipated in spring of the upcoming year. However, a recent update suggests that the £299 payment might be disbursed before spring 2023, possibly arriving before March 20. The final decision regarding this alteration is anticipated to be revealed by Chancellor Jeremy Hunt during the Autumn Statement on November 22.
To qualify for the second cost of living payment, individuals must have been receiving benefits between August 18 and September 17. For Universal Credit recipients, this requirement mandates that their assessment period must have concluded within these dates, resulting in a benefit payment. An ongoing petition initiated by Tobias Olliver Haynes seeks a modification wherein having an active Universal Credit claim should suffice for eligibility.
Notably, last year, 423,000 households were excluded from the cost of living payments due to their earnings exceeding the threshold for Universal Credit during the qualifying period. The HMRC will administer the second payment. Tax credit recipients are eligible if they received a tax credit payment during the qualifying period, provided their total tax credit entitlement for the entire tax year is above £26. Individuals receiving both Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit will receive a consolidated payment of £300, deposited into the same account where the Child Tax Credit is received.
Those supplementing their tax credits with a low-income benefit from DWP will receive a single sum of £300, directly from DWP. The payment reference for bank accounts will include the recipient’s national insurance number followed by either DWP COL or HMRC COLS. These adjustments in payment dates and eligibility criteria aim to streamline the process and ensure timely financial assistance to those relying on means-tested benefits.