Cold weather payments will be sent out to those who qualify after temperatures fell below zero this week.
The £25 payments - which are set up to help households pay for extra energy use - have been triggered in 300 postcodes across the country, where the average temperature is forecast to be 0°C or below freezing for seven days in a row.
The £25 payments are issued for each seven day period of very cold weather between 1 November and 31 March.
While exact criteria can vary, those eligible for the payments include those already getting:
- Pension credit
- Income support
- Income-based jobseeker's allowance
- Income-related employment and support allowance
- Support for mortgage interest
- Universal credit
You can find more information on if you're eligible on the government website.
Following each seven-day period of cold weather, you should receive a payment within 14 working days. The funds are paid into the same account as benefit payments.
If you're unsure whether the payments have been triggered in your postcode, you can use this handy tool to find out if your area is eligible.
If you are eligible, and your area has been affected by the cold snap, you don't need to do anything - the money will be paid in automatically.
Payments work differently in Scotland, however. If you do live in Scotland, you cannot get cold weather payments.
They have now been replaced by a £50 winter heating payment, which sees all eligible people receive £50 each year, regardless of weather or temperature.
The payments will be issued following the Met Office issuing an amber weather warning as temperatures plummet across the UK.
Overnight temperatures could drop to as low as -10°C, increasing health risks to vulnerable people and disrupting deliveries.
The level three - or amber - cold weather alert warns of severe conditions in England up to 9am on Monday (12 December).
Met Office deputy chief meteorologist Rebekah Sherwin said: "Temperatures will start to dip this week, with daytime temperatures struggling to get above freezing in many places from mid-week onwards.
"However, the cold air from the Arctic will also bring brighter conditions, with some dry, sunny spells in many areas, particularly away from the coast.
"Showers will turn more wintry as the week goes on with a risk of snow at times.
"[...] There will be widespread frosts with temperatures falling to as low as minus 10°C overnight in isolated spots by the end of the week."Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock