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West Dunbartonshire’s MP Martin Docherty-Hughes is calling on residents to check whether they or older family members are eligible for Pension Credit, to help with the rising cost-of-living.

Pension Credit is a benefit payment which helps low-income pensioners with their living costs, providing more than £3,300 per year on average. It is also a ‘passporting benefit’ which can give eligible claimants access to schemes such as the free TV-licence, and support with council tax and heating bills.

According to the House of Commons Library, only around 66% of those eligible for Pension Credit are currently claiming it – with an estimated 123,000 households in Scotland missing out on payments they are entitled to.

Local MP Martin Docherty-Hughes has signed an Early Day Motion (EDM) in parliament pressing the UK government to give additional support to the Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) so that new claims for Pension Credit are processed as quickly as possible.

Pension Credit can be claimed by people of state pension age whose weekly income is less than £182.60 if single, or £278.70 for couples.

Successful claims for Pension Credit made by 18th December 2022 can be backdated three months which will also entitle the claimant to an additional one-off payment of £324 to help with the cost-of-living.

Martin Docherty-Hughes MP said:

“Many of my constituents are finding things difficult just now due to the UK’s cost-of-living crisis. It’s vital that households ensure they’re receiving every penny of support they’re entitled to.

“I’d urge residents to check whether they or older family members are entitled to Pension Credit, which can give a financial boost to pensioner households of over £3,300 per year. Those who apply successfully by the 18th December deadline can also receive an additional one-off cost-of-living payment of £324.

“There are thousands of people of pension age in West Dunbartonshire and across Scotland missing out on these payments. It only takes a few minutes to check eligibility.

“I work closely with local money advice organisations and my constituency office is on hand to help anyone needing assistance with completing their Pension Credit application form.”

To check eligibility for Pension Credit, visit the government website at or call the helpline on 0800 99 1234.

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