Pension Credit can top up your low income if you've reached State Pension age. Lots of people who qualify for it aren’t claiming it, so it’s worth checking if you can get it.
Could you be entitled to a free TV licence?
Over-75s now have to pay for their TV licence, unless they're getting Guarantee Pension Credit. That means it’s more important than ever to check you’re not missing out on claiming Pension Credit. Check if you qualify by using our online benefits calculator.
Who can claim Pension Credit?
There are two types of Pension Credit: Guarantee Credit and Savings Credit.
Your weekly income, including assumed income from savings and capital over £10,000, will need to be less than the minimum amount the government says you need to live on. For 2023/24, this is £201.05 for a single person and £306.85 for a couple. This amount could be higher if you're disabled, a carer or have certain housing costs.
You can only get Savings Credit if:
you reached State Pension age before 6 April 2016, or you have a partner who reached State Pension age before this date and was already receiving it
and you have qualifying income of at least £174.49 a week for a single person and £277.12 a week for a couple.
Use our free benefits calculator to work out if you might be able to get it. You can also call our free Helpline on 0800 319 6789 to arrange to speak to an adviser.
How much can you get?
Guarantee Credit tops up your weekly income to:
£201.05 for a single person
£306.85 for a couple (married, in a civil partnership or cohabiting).
You might be able to get more than this if you're disabled or a carer, or you have certain housing costs.
Savings Credit can give you up to:
£15.94 a week for a single person
£17.84 a week for a couple (married, in a civil partnership or cohabiting).
The exact amount you’ll get depends on your income and savings.
Here's an example:
Mr Smith is 76 years old. He is not a carer and he has no serious health conditions. He is single, rents his home and has a State Pension of £129.20 a week and an occupational pension of £25 a week. He also has savings of £11,000. The first £10,000 are ignored, and an extra £1 of income is counted for every £500 above this. This means he has a deemed income from savings of £2 a week. So, his income is calculated as:
£129.20 State Pension + £25.00 occupational pension + £2.00 deemed income = £156.20 total income
Mr Smith’s appropriate minimum guarantee is £201.05
£201.05 appropriate minimum guarantee – £156.20 income = £44.85
This gives him Guarantee Credit of £44.85 a week.
Cost of living payments 2023/24
If you were receiving Pension Credit between 13 November 2023 and 12 December 2023 (or have since been found to have qualified for it during that time), you’re eligible for a Cost of Living Payment of £299. You should get this payment between 6 February and 22 February 2024.
To make a claim for Pension Credit, call the claim line on 0800 99 1234, or see other ways to claim at Gov.uk.
You can also claim for Pension Credit online, if you've already claimed your State Pension and there are no children or young people included in your claim.
When you claim, you’ll need the following information to hand:
your National Insurance number
information about your income, including your pensions
details of your savings and investments
your bank account details.
If you have a partner, you'll need the same details for them too.
If you can’t claim by phone or online, ask a relative or a voluntary organisation – such as a local Citizens Advice – to request a paper application form on your behalf. You can also download the form to print out. Call our Helpline on 0800 319 6789 if you need extra support.
Rules for mixed-age couples
You cannot usually make a new claim for Pension Credit if you live with a partner who is under State Pension age unless:
one of you reached State Pension age before 15 May 2019, AND
one of you has been claiming pension age Housing Benefit since 15 May 2019 as part of the same couple.
If you cannot claim Pension Credit you may be able to make a claim for Universal Credit instead. Contact the Universal Credit helpline on 0800 328 5644 for more information.