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Check now if your relative can get Pension Credit

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Hundreds of thousands of people entitled to receive Pension Credit are missing out. With the cost-of-living crisis worsening, now’s the time to check if you or your older relative is eligible.

Up to 850,000 people entitled to receive Pension Credit in 2020 failed to claim the benefit, missing out on an average £1,900 a year.

For some, the benefit can be worth over £3,300 a year and latest statistics from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) revealed £1.7bn is unclaimed.

Pension Credit is an income-related benefit that tops up a pensioner’s weekly income if it’s below £177.10 for a single person or £270.30 for a couple (rising to £182.60 and £278.70 respectively from 11 April).

It also acts as a gateway for other benefits, such as help with council tax, NHS prescriptions and glasses as well as the potential for a free TV licence.

And with the cost-of-living crisis, the DWP is launching a campaign to get more people in receipt of the benefit. It said advertising will feature in internet search results and on social media, and leaflets will be distributed in local communities.

Reminders will continue to be sent in the post to all state pension recipients.

‘Promoting Pension Credit is a priority’

Minister for pensions, Guy Opperman, said: “We recognise the challenges some pensioners will be facing with the cost of living which is why promoting Pension Credit is a priority.

“That’s why we’re calling on everyone with retired family, friends and loved ones to check in with them and see if they can get this extra financial support.

“The campaign also includes tackling some of the myths that may stop people applying, such as how having savings, a pension or owning a home are not necessarily barriers to receiving Pension Credit.

“It also reminds people that even a small award can provide access to a wide range of other benefits – such as help with housing costs, council tax or heating bills. For those over 75, this includes continued entitlement to a free TV licence.

“Pension Credit can be claimed by phone and online, ensuring that older people can apply safely and easily, wherever they are. The online Pension Credit calculator is also on hand to help pensioners check if they’re likely to be eligible and get an estimate of what they may receive.”

Anyone who thinks they or their relative may be eligible can call 0800 99 1234. The following information will be required:

  • National Insurance number
  • Information about any income, savings and investments
  • Bank account details for those applying by phone or post.

‘Claim what’s rightfully yours’

Caroline Abrahams, charity director at Age UK, added: “Pension Credit can make a big difference if you’ve reached State Pension Age and haven’t got much money coming in. With prices rising rapidly at the moment, it’s more important than ever to claim what’s rightfully yours. We urge any older person who thinks they may be eligible to put in a claim and Age UK is here to provide advice and practical support to help you with the process.”

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