Claiming the energy bills support

Published: Monday, 23 January 2023

THE narrowboatworld was given a update on the 18th January 2023 by the Department for Business and Energy on the Energy Bills Support Scheme Alternative Funding and The Alternative Fuel Payment, writes K Alexander-Duggan.

The Government has confirmed that the application portal for the Energy Bills Support Scheme Alternative Funding is due to open by 30th January 2023, along with a dedicated helpline to assist customers without online access.

Living support package

Domestic households across Great Britain that have a direct relationship with their electricity supplier are receiving a £400 non-repayable payment in six instalments under the Energy Bills Support Scheme as part of the UK Government’s £37 billion cost of living support package.

However, some 900,000 households without a direct relationship with their electricity supplier, will need to apply for a one-off payment of £400 from the Energy Bills Support Scheme Alternative Funding, which will then be paid directly to them by their local authority. This includes people who live in park homes, houseboats, off-grid and care homes, or those paying their energy bills as part of an all-inclusive rental agreement with their landlord.

The Alternative Fuel Payment of £200 is for households who are not on the mains gas grid and can be applied through the same dedicated portal or by the dedicated helpline.

How to claim

What is the process for claiming the money?

Applicants will only be able to submit information through the GOV.UK portal or by the dedicated helpline when it opens this month and should not contact their local authority directly as they will not be able to offer any more information.

Once households have applied to receive support and their applications have been processed and verified, eligible applicants' details will be shared with local authorities who will deliver the one-off, non-repayable support this winter.

The Government also stated that the exact date that an eligible household will receive support will depend on when the application is made and when the payment can be processed by the relevant local authority.

Who can claim?

Who can claim the £400 Energy Bills Support Scheme Alternative Funding?

The criteria for this funding is:

* The household that support is being claimed for is the main or only home address of the person to receive the support.

* The resident or applicant is responsible for paying the household energy bill. This means either as part of a service charge, rent, or other arrangement and may have had the impact of increased energy bills costs passed on to them between 1st October 2022 to 31st March 2023.

* The household is not already receiving EBSS payments in whole or in part.

* The household is not a business premises or other form of non-domestic premises. It must be used solely or mainly for domestic purposes.

Following people are eligible: 

* care home residents

* residents of park homes

* tenants in certain private and social rented homes

* homes supplied via private grid

* residents of houseboats on registered moorings

* residents of caravans on registered sites

* farmers living in domestic farmhouses

* off-grid households

* Travellers on registered sites