Anyone eligible for a free TV license will have to send documentation to the BBC to prove they’re receiving pension credit – but the rules are changing, allowing the BBC to verify this using the DWP instead
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Thousands of pensioners will be able to apply for a free TV license more easily as part of a new restructuring confirmed by the government.
Free TV licenses for over-75s have been scrapped in 2020, except for those claiming pension credits.
Under current rules, anyone eligible for a free-to-air TV license must submit documentation to the BBC to prove they are receiving pension credit.
But as part of an overhaul of the system, the BBC will soon be able to automatically verify this information with the Department for Works and Pensions (DWP).
This means that in most cases, households only need to apply online or over the phone, with no additional documentation required.
An act amending the Television Licensing Act 2000 was passed in Parliament today.
The changes to the application process are expected to come into effect next year. A full color TV license costs £159.
Digital Secretary Nadine Dorries said: “The BBC’s disappointing decision to stop providing free television licenses to everyone over 75 has resulted in low-income pensioners who remain eligible jumping through administrative hurdles to get the payment of the avoid fee.
“The changes mean those receiving pension credits will get the savings with minimal fuss, ensuring more people get the support they are entitled to while we address the cost of living and stimulate the economy.
Pensions Secretary Guy Opperman said: “We want everyone to take advantage of the benefits they are entitled to, including the pension credit, which acts as a gateway to other benefits such as the free television licence.
“This change will help ease the administrative burden for those over 75 and give them peace of mind.”
What is a pension loan?
Latest government figures suggest 850,000 people are missing out on retirement credit.
Pension Credit is a benefit that supplements pensioners’ incomes so that they have a decent standard of living.
According to government figures, the average annual increase in income from pension credit is around £3,300 per year.
There are two parts to the pension credit and you may be entitled to one or both depending on your circumstances.
The Guaranteed Credit element of Retirement Credit increases your weekly income to:
- £182.60 if you are single
- £278.70 if you have a partner
If you reached statutory retirement age before April 6, 2016, you may be eligible for the savings element of your retirement balance.
You could achieve:
- £14.48 if you are single
- £16.20 if you are a couple
You may receive extra money if you have other obligations and costs, such as B. if you have a high rent, if you have a disability or if you care for someone.
For example, you could get an extra £69.40 per week if you’re claiming certain disability benefits, or an extra £38.85 per week if you’re claiming Carer’s Allowance.
If you are responsible for children or young people you can receive an additional £56.35 per week for each person you care for.
This is increased to £66.85 per week for the first child if born before 6 April 2017.
If the child or young person is disabled you can also get an extra amount of between £30.58 and £95.48 per week if they receive certain benefits.
You can see all the additional top-ups and their rates on the gov.uk Website.
https://www.mirror.co.uk/money/new-dwp-shake-up-make-27319401 The new DWP restructuring will make it easier for pensioners to apply for a free TV license