When do you get the cost of living payment? Dates for the second instalment of the £650 support

The first instalment was made in the summer, but when do you get the cost of living payment and how much is it?

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Wondering when do you get the cost of living payment? The good news is there is not long to wait. On 4 October 2022, the government confirmed that the second cost of living payment will start hitting bank accounts of eligible families in November.

This payment will be the final instalment of the £650 support package (opens in new tab) pledged by former Chancellor Rishi Sunak for low income families to help them through the cost of living crisis. 

Roughly eight million families are eligible for the payment. This follows the £150 council tax rebate (opens in new tab) that was paid to those in council tax band A-D earlier this year, and comes as the £400 energy rebate (opens in new tab) also hits bank accounts.

Former Work and Pensions Secretary, Chloe Smith (opens in new tab) said: "Millions of families will soon see a £324 cash boost as part of our extensive £1,200 support package, helping to raise incomes and manage the rising cost of living.

"We understand that people are struggling which is why and we’re committed to supporting the most vulnerable households. That’s also why we are focused on driving growth and delivering quality public services so we can continue to support those in need through these challenging times while boosting opportunity for all."

When do you get the cost of living payment?

The cost of living payment will be paid from Department of Work and Pensions  (DWP) between 8 and 23 November. It will be paid automatically to anyone is eligible so there is no need to apply or do anything in order to receive the payment.  

For the one million families who receive tax credits only (and no-other means-tested benefits), they payment will be made from HM Revenue & Customs between 23 and 30 November. This payment comes after the DWP payment to avoid duplication. 

Former Chancellor of the Exchequer, Kwasi Kwarteng (opens in new tab), said: "We know that people have been worried about their bills ahead of this winter, which is why we’ve taken decisive action to hold down energy bills, saving the average household around £1,000 a year, and provided £1,200 of targeted support to the most vulnerable."

How much will I get and who is eligible?

November's instalment of the cost of living payment will be £324. The £650 support package was split into two instalments. The first instalment was £326 and was paid to qualifying families in July. 

If you claim Universal Credit, you might be wondering does everyone on Universal Credit get the cost of living payment? (opens in new tab) But it's not just those who receive Universal Credit who can qualify for the money. 

To be eligible for the second payment, you must have have been entitled to a to the following (or later found to be entitled) between 26 August 2022 and 25 September 2022:

The payment will be tax-free, will not count towards the benefit cap, and will not have any impact on existing benefit awards.

What other support could I get?

As well as the second cost of living payment for eligible families, all households that pay for their energy will be entitled to the £400 energy rebate that will be paid in instalments between October 2022 and March 2023. This will see energy bills reduced by £66 each month between October and December and £67 each month between January and March 2023.  

On 1 October, the government also introduced the Energy Price Guarantee (opens in new tab) that aimed to freeze the price you pay per unit of gas and electricity you use for two years. This was introduced to protect families from rising energy prices that could have seen average annual energy bills based on typical use rise to more than £4,500. However, in the aftermath of fallout from Kwasi Kwarteng's mini budget, he was replaced as Chancellor by Jeremy Hunt. Jeremy Hunt then stated that while the Energy Price Guarantee will remain in place, it would only be guaranteed until April 2023. It is not yet known what support will be offered, especially to low-income families, beyond this point if energy prices continue to rise. 

Over the winter at least, average annual bills based on typical use will be around £2,500. But remember, this isn't a maximum amount you will pay, this is just an example of an annual bill based on typical use. If you use more energy, you will pay more than £2,500. 

If you are struggling to pay your energy bills (opens in new tab), help is available. Contact your supplier who can help advise on the best way forward.