Warm Home Discount broader group criteria for 2020 to 2021

February 2021 update: Applications for winter 2020 to 2021 are now closed. We'll announce details of the scheme for 2021 to 2022 in the spring. If you’ve already started or sent an application, and it's approved, you’ll get the £140 discount by 31 March 2021. We might need to ask you for more evidence before approving your application - we’ll let you know soon if we do.

Before checking if you're eligible to apply for the Warm Home Discount as part of the 'broader group', make sure you've checked you don't qualify in the 'core group'. There's no need to apply if you're in the core group. 

Qualifying for the broader group

To get the Warm Home Discount from Bulb as part of the ‘broader group’ in winter 2020 to 2021, both of the following must apply:

It doesn’t matter when you joined Bulb, as long as you get your electricity from us when you apply and when you get the payment.

And if you're still not sure after you've checked the eligible low income benefits and additional criteria, we've got some extra eligibility advice.

Low income benefits

The eligible low income benefits are:

  • Child Tax Credit that’s been awarded based on an annual income of £16,190 or less
  • Council Tax Reduction with a total annual household income of £16,190 or less
  • the Guarantee Credit part of Pension Credit, if you weren't with Bulb on 5 July 2020 and your old supplier didn't offer the Warm Home Discount
  • Housing Benefit with a total annual household income of £16,190 or less
  • Income Support
  • income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) which includes a support or work-related activity component
  • the Savings element of Pension Credit
  • Universal Credit with an earned income of £1,349 or less in at least one assessment period since 1 October 2019
  • Working Tax Credit that’s been awarded based on an annual income of £16,190 or less

Additional eligibility criteria

The additional eligibility criteria are:

  • you’re responsible for a child aged 16 or younger who normally lives with you
  • you’re aged 65 or older
  • you get any UK armed forces benefit or pension
  • you get a disabled child premium
  • you get a disability premium, enhanced disability premium or severe disability premium (this includes Disability Living Allowance, Personal Independence Payment and Attendance Allowance)
  • you get a pensioner premium, higher pensioner premium or enhanced pensioner premium
  • you get the 'limited capability for work' or 'limited capability for work and work-related activity' element of Universal Credit
  • you get the disabled child element of Universal Credit
  • you get the disability or severe disability element of Child Tax Credit
  • you get the Carer's Premium or Carer's Allowance for someone in your home
  • you get the disability or severe disability element of Working Tax Credit

Eligibility advice

You’re eligible if you’re in the support group of income-related ESA

You qualify under our additional criteria, because you’re automatically entitled to the ‘enhanced disability premium’ or the ‘disability income guarantee’.

You might be eligible if you’re in the work-related activity group of income-related ESA

You’ll qualify if you also meet one of the additional eligibility criteria.

You’re not eligible if you only get contribution-based ESA

Under Ofgem’s requirements, our broader group criteria must be linked to low income. So contribution-based ESA doesn’t qualify, but income-related ESA does, as long as it includes a support or work-related activity component. If you get contribution-based ESA, you might still qualify by getting one of the other low income benefits in our criteria, together with one of the additional eligibility criteria.

Council Tax Reduction is different to other kinds of council tax discount

We've added Council Tax Reduction as one of our eligible benefits, if your total annual household income is £16,190 or less.

Other council tax discounts aren't eligible, including:

Contact Citizens Advice if you're not sure about the benefits you receive

Citizens Advice will be able to talk you through your situation and help make sure you’re claiming for the full amount you’re entitled to. 

How the broader group criteria are chosen

Ofgem sets the basic criteria for suppliers who offer the Warm Home Discount. Suppliers can also pick additional options and criteria for their customers to qualify for the scheme. 

Because suppliers can pick their criteria, there isn’t a single version of the broader group that applies to all suppliers. But Ofgem does need to approve the criteria that each supplier sets. So you may be eligible with one supplier and not another, and the criteria can change each year.

For winter 2020 to 2021, we expanded our criteria beyond Ofgem’s recommended list so more people are now eligible.

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