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Child Winter Heating Assistance

This advice applies to Scotland

What is Child Winter Heating Assistance

Child Winter Heating Assistance is a benefit payment for parents and carers to help with household costs for disabled children and young people. It’s paid by Social Security Scotland.

You do not need to show proof of how you spend the money.

How much is it

Child Winter Heating Assistance is a payment of £202 for an eligible child or young person in the household. 

It’s paid once a year.

If you have more than 1 eligible child or young person in the household, they'll each get the payment.

Who can get Child Winter Heating Assistance

If you’re under 19 and live in Scotland, you’ll get Child Winter Heating Assistance if you're getting 1 of the following benefits:

  • the highest rate of the care component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children
  • the highest rate of the care component of Child Disability Payment
  • the enhanced rate of the daily living component of Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

You must be getting the benefit on at least 1 day during the 'qualifying week'.

The qualifying week is the third week in September every year. In 2021 it was the 20 to 26 September. 

You’ll be paid the Child Winter Heating Assistance automatically. You do not need to apply, unless you live part of the year abroad.

You’ll get a letter in advance telling you that you’re getting the payment.

If you live in Switzerland or an EEA country 

If you live in Switzerland or a European Economic Area (EEA) country with an average temperature that is the same or lower than the UK's average temperature, you might be able to get the Child Winter Heating Assistance if you've lived in Scotland.

You can apply if you're under 19 and got 1 of the following benefits during the qualifying week:

  • the highest rate of the care component of DLA for children
  • the highest rate of the care component of Child Disability Payment
  • the enhanced rate of the daily living component of PIP.

You must also give evidence of a strong link to Scotland, for example you’ve lived in Scotland for a significant period.

Find out which countries are in the EEA on GOV.UK.

You’re not eligible for the Child Winter Heating Assistance if you live in a country with a higher average temperature than the UK. These countries include:

  • Cyprus
  • France
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Malta
  • Portugal
  • Spain.

Applying for Child Winter Heating Assistance outside Scotland

You won't get Child Winter Heating Assistance automatically.

You can apply by:

  • phone - by calling Social Security Scotland on +44 (0)1382 93100. You can ask Social Security Scotland to call you back 
  • post - you can get a paper form on mygov.scot.

You should send the completed application form to:

Child Winter Heating Assistance
PO BOX 10317
Dundee
DD1 9GR

How Child Winter Heating Assistance is paid

You’ll get the payment during winter, when heating costs are higher.

It’s paid into the same bank account as your DLA for children, Child Disability Payment or PIP.

This might be the bank account of a parent or carer who acts on behalf of the child or young person.

Payments are sent out at the end of November each year. The payment should be in your bank account by the second week of December.

If you do not get Child Winter Heating Assistance

If you were expecting to get Child Winter Heating Assistance automatically but do not get it, you should check if there's been a mistake by contacting Social Security Scotland.

You might not have got the payment because:

  • the Department for Work and Pensions did not pass your details to Social Security Scotland 
  • you were not getting the highest rate of the care component of DLA, Child Disability Payment, or the enhanced daily living rate of PIP in the qualifying week
  • Social Security Scotland do not think you're eligible. You can ask for the decision to be looked at again, this is called a re-determination.

If a child or young person was in hospital or residential care in the qualifying week, they should still get Child Winter Heating Assistance automatically.

If you start getting a disability benefit after the qualifying week for Child Winter Heating Assistance

If you get the highest rate of the care component of Child Disability Payment backdated to include the qualifying week, you’ll automatically get Child Winter Heating Assistance.

You’ll need to contact Social Security Scotland to get Child Winter Heating Assistance if you get 1 of the following benefits backdated to include the qualifying week:

  • the highest rate of care component of DLA for children
  • the enhanced rate of the daily living component of PIP. 

You must have been under 19 in the qualifying week.

You can get help from an advocate to apply. You can ask for an advocate by contacting Social Security Scotland and asking for the Independent Advocacy Service.

If you want Social Security Scotland to look again at their decision 

If you're refused Child Winter Heating Assistance, you can ask for your application to be looked at again. This is called a re-determination.

You can ask for this up to 42 days after the day you’re told by Social Security Scotland you're not getting the payment.

If you miss this deadline for a good reason, for example you were very ill, Social Security Scotland might still allow you to ask for a re-determination.

You should get an answer within 16 days of your request. Read more about challenging Social Security Scotland.

If you’re paid Child Winter Heating Assistance by mistake

If you're paid by mistake or you're paid too much money, you might have to pay the money back to Social Security Scotland.

They'll get in touch with you and discuss how you might pay the money back. They'll take your financial circumstances into consideration. Find out more about overpayments of Scottish benefits.

Child Winter Heating Assistance and other benefits

Getting Child Winter Heating Assistance should not affect your other benefits.

If you get Universal Credit, a Child Winter Heating Assistance payment won't be counted as savings for 52 weeks. This means if you spend the payment before you get the next one, it should not affect your Universal Credit claim.

If you apply for Council Tax Reduction, Child Winter Heating Assistance should not be taken into account as income.

How to contact Social Security Scotland

Social Security Scotland 
General Enquiries
PO Box 10301
Dundee
DD1 9FW

Phone: 0800 182 2222 (8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday)
British Sign Language: contactSCOTLAND app by video relay
Website: www.mygov.scot

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