I’m getting a State pension, can I get help with heating costs?

Fuel Allowance is paid to people who are on long-term social welfare payments and are unable to pay for their own heating needs. If you are getting a State pension, you may qualify for the allowance as long as you live alone or only with:

• A dependent spouse, civil partner or cohabitant and/or dependent children

• Other people getting one of the qualifying payments who would also be eligible for a Fuel Allowance in their own right

• A person who is getting Carer’s Allowance or Carer’s Benefit and is caring for you or for your dependent spouse, partner or cohabitant on a full-time basis

• A person getting short-term Jobseeker’s Allowance or basic Supplementary Welfare Allowance

You will also be required to satisfy a means test. If you are on a State Pension (Non-Contributory) you automatically meet the means test. If you are getting the State Pension (Contributory) you will satisfy the means test if you have means of €100 or less per week.

Where two or more people living in the same household qualify for the allowance, only one allowance is paid. If your heating needs are met in other ways (for example, if you live in local authority housing where heating is provided) you do not qualify for Fuel Allowance. The Fuel Allowance season runs through October until the beginning of April. 

You can choose to get the allowance paid weekly, €22.50 per week or in two lump sums of €315 – one paid at the start of the season and the second, in January.

If you think you are eligible, you should apply immediately. The allowance will not be backdated after the start of the fuel season, which this year starts on 30 September. The application form for Fuel Allowance (NFS1) is available at your post office or social welfare office, online or by texting FORM FUEL followed by your name and address to 51909.

Further information is available from Clifden Citizens Information Service which provides a free and confidential service to the public. Tel: 0761 07 7580 / 087 1301100 Email: clifden@citinfo.ie –2nd Floor, Credit Union Building, Clifden – open: Thursday 7pm – 8pm, Friday 1030am – 330pm