TV licence is still free to some over 75s – but you need to take action to unlock support | Personal Finance | Finance


People who are aged 75 or over will likely be well aware of the free over 75 TV licence scheme, which has since come to an end. It means those in this age group will now need to pay the fee for the year – which is currently £157.50.

The TV Licensing website states: “You can get a free TV licence if:

  • You, as the licence holder, are 75 years or older, and
  • You, or your partner living at the same address, receive Pension Credit.”

Pension Credit is a means-tested benefit people may be able to get if they have reached state pension age.

It is made up of two parts – Guarantee Credit and Savings Credit.

The former tops up a person’s weekly income if it’s below 173.75 (for single people) or £265.20 (for couples).

Even if a person has savings, a pension, or their own home, then they may still be eligible.

Savings Credit, meanwhile, is an extra payment for people who saved some money towards their retirement, such as a pension.

If a person reached state pension age on or after April 6, 2016, then they may not be eligible for Savings Credit.

Tax doesn’t need to be paid on Pension Credit, unlike the state pension.

To work out how much a person may be able to get, a Pension Credit calculator – available on the Government website – can be used.

GOV.UK also highlights the potential to unlock other forms of financial support.

“If you get Guarantee Credit you’ll also qualify for other benefits such as Housing Benefit, Council Tax Reduction, Cold Weather Payments and help with the costs of NHS services,” it states.

“Check a benefits calculator to see if you’re eligible for anything else.”

Who is eligible for Pension Credit?

According to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), around one million pensioner households who were entitled to Pension Credit did not claim it in the financial year of 2018 to 2019.

The estimates show that, during that period, six out of 10 of those entitled to Pension Credit claimed it.

To begin getting Pension Credit, the following criteria must apply.

The person must live in England, Scotland or Wales and have reached state pension age.

For couples, the rules state: “If you’re in a couple you can start getting Pension Credit if either:

  • You and your partner have both reached State Pension age
  • One of you is getting Housing Benefit for people over state pension age.”

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