Will the Easter weekend affect DWP payment dates in April?
With the UK’s cost of living crisis remaining acute and millions still struggling to pay energy bills, the approach of the Easter weekend may leave some concerned about possible disruption to Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) payments dates for benefits and pensions.
The unwelcome news that the rate of inflation actually rose in February from 10.1 per cent to 10.4 per cent means that the prices of everyday goods on supermarket shelves will remain high, compounding the strain on household budgets for many.
What’s more, the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) responded to Jeremy Hunt’s Budget of 15 March by stating that the UK should expect its biggest fall in living standards on record.
Real households’ disposable income per person is set to tumble 5.7 per cent between 2022/23 and 2023/24, the OBR warned.
In the meantime, the usual state support will be going out as normal in April, although it is true that the need to accommodate the Easter bank holidays could change payment dates slightly for some.
As Good Friday (7 April) and Easter Monday (10 April) are both national holidays, anyone expecting to receive any of the following payments from the DWP on either of those dates will instead receive their money early on Thursday 6 April instead:
- Universal credit
- State pension
- Pension credit
- Disability living allowance
- Personal independence payment
- Attendance allowance
- Carer’s allowance
- Employment support allowance
- Income support
- Jobseeker’s allowance
If you are not expecting payment on either of those dates, you should be paid as normal and be unaffected by the slight amendment to the routine.
For more information on how and when state benefits are paid, please visit the government’s website.
Despite the persistently gloomy economic picture, there was some good news for consumers in Mr Hunt’s Budget.
The chancellor announced that the energy price guarantee (EPG) – introduced by Liz Truss last September to ensure households paid no more than £2,500 for their electricity and gas, with the government subsidising the remainder permitted by Ofgem’s energy price cap – would be extended for a further three months.
Mr Hunt had been tempted to increase the EPG to £3,000 from 1 April, a considerably less generous offer that would have eased the burden on the state, but ultimately thought better of it.
“High energy bills are one of the biggest worries for families, which is why we’re maintaining the energy price guarantee at its current level,” the chancellor told parliament.
“With energy bills set to fall from July onwards, this temporary change will bridge the gap and ease the pressure on families, while also helping to lower inflation too.”
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