Who is it for?
For people over state pension age who are on a low income.
Take up is extremely low with an estimated 123,000 households in Scotland not claiming their entitlement.
The aim is to top up your weekly income to a weekly guaranteed minimum.
It is separate from your State Pension and you may be entitled to it even if you have savings, own your home or have additional income.
When you apply for Pension Credit your income will be calculated and if you have a partner their income will be included.
How much is it?
There are two parts to Pension Credit – Guaranteed Credit & Savings Credit
Guaranteed Credit – tops up weekly income to £201.05 for single people or £306.85* for a couple.
If you have a severe disability or caring responsibilities this could be higher.
Savings Credit – If you reached State Pension age before 6 April 2016 you could be entitled to a Savings Credit if your income is higher.
A single person could be entitled to £15.94 or £17.84* if you’re a couple.
Income includes – State Pension, other pensions, earnings from employment/self-employment and some social security benefits eg Carer’s Allowance
Not included as income – Not all benefits (Adult Disability Allowance; Attendance Allowance; Christmas Bonus; Personal Independence Payment; social fund payments such as Winter Fuel Allowance; Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction); £10,000 or less of savings
Anything else I should know?
If you’re entitled to a personal or workplace pension or have deferred your State Pension this will be counted as income.
If you have more than £10,000 savings, every £500 above £10,000 counts as £1 of income a week.
Receiving Pension Credit also entitles you to additional financial support to help with housing, energy and health.
How do I make a claim?
You can start your application up to four months before reaching State Pension age or any time after but your application will only be backdated by three months.
You will need the following information:
- National Insurance number
- Details of your income, savings & investments and that of your partner
- Your housing costs
- Your bank details
- Call 0800 991234
- Online – https://apply-for-pension-credit.service.gov.uk/start
- Applications can also be made by post by calling the claim line number to request a form.
- For support with your application contact WD Citizens Advice Bureau on 0800 484 013
*The information in this article was correct at the time of publication in October 2022 and figures were updated in Sept 2023.