Am I eligible for the Government's Cost of Living Payment?

Woman typing on a calculator, holding a pen ready to write in her notebook which is next to her.
Owen Crane

Digital Content Creator

Find out if you could receive the Cost of Living Payment. 

I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that the cost of living crisis is real. Inflation is having a direct impact on food prices and pushing up the cost of your weekly shop. In addition, the cost of petrol, as well as gas and electricity is skyrocketing.

As bleak as this is, there is some good news. The UK Government is providing an additional Cost of Living Payment for people receiving benefits. However, it can be a little confusing as to who gets the help and when it’s available. Read our simple guide below to see what this could mean for you.

What is the Cost of Living Payment?

The Cost of Living Payment is extra funds provided by the UK Government to help support those living on a low income and in receipt of certain benefits.

How much is the Cost of Living Payment?

In 2022 the Cost of Living Payment was £650 in total and was paid in two instalments. The first payment was £326 and the second payment was £324.

The UK Government has announced further Cost of Living Payments for 2023–2024. A Cost of Living Payment of up to £900 is available for people on eligible low income benefits. This will be paid in three instalments over 2023 — 2024. 

There is also an extra £150 or £300 available for eligible pensioner households (in addition to Winter Fuel Payments) and £150 for people on an eligible disability benefit.

Who gets the Cost of Living Payment?

If you receive any of these benefits then you will be eligible to receive a payment.

  • Universal Credit

  • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)

  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)

  • Income Support

  • Pension Credit

  • Child Tax Credit

  • Working Tax Credit

To receive the first payment, you need to have been entitled to the above benefits from 26 January 2023 to 25 February 2023. Check the Government website for eligibility criteria.

How do I get the Cost of Living Payment?

You don’t have to do anything. If you are eligible then the payment will automatically be paid to you in the same way that your benefits are paid. You will receive the payments as standalone amounts in your account.

You do not need to apply or provide any details to receive the payment.

Will Cost of Living Payment be paid with Universal Credit?

The Cost of Living Payment is made in addition to Universal Credit. 

You will receive the payment in the same way you receive your benefits currently. 

When will I receive the Cost of Living Payment?

The first Cost of Living Payment in 2023 will be made between 25 April and 17 May. 

The second payment of £300 is due sometime in Autumn 2023 and the third payment of £299 during Spring 2024. 

The Disability Payment of £150 is due to be paid between the 20 June and 4 July 2023 and the Pensioner Payment of £300 is due during Winter 2023/24.

I think I should have received a Cost of Living Payment but I haven’t

If you think you should have received a Cost of Living Payment, you can report a missing Cost of Living Payment here.

Get more help

The cost of living rises that we’ve seen are extreme and we know that many people will be pushed into scary financial situations. If that sounds like you, or if you know someone who is in difficulty then please get in touch with us. CAP exists to help people who are in financial difficulties and we are only a phone call away.