Fuel Direct is a government scheme that allows customers to pay for their energy bills directly from their benefits.
With a Fuel Direct repayment method, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) will take money from your benefits to help you to pay for your energy use, as well as any arrears that you may have accumulated.
With the Fuel Direct scheme, you will be able to pay certain bills, such as rent, gas & electric and water, directly from your benefits. This is known as a Third-Party Deduction.
Who is eligible?
You may be eligible if you are currently in receipt of any of the following benefits:
- Universal Credit;
- Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance;
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance;
- Income Support;
- Pension Credit
It is important to note that it is a requirement that you must have an active gas or electric account, receive any of the above benefits and have an outstanding debt of £70 (£140 for dual fuel customers).
What are the pros and cons of Fuel Direct?
Fuel Direct is an effective way to prevent a greater debt from building. With the Fuel Direct scheme, you will not need to remember to make weekly payments, as the payment is taken automatically. Arrears are set up to be paid at a low weekly rate.
However, the Fuel Direct scheme can take between four and six weeks to set up and therefore we recommended that you continue to top up during this time to ensure you are not falling further into debt arrears.
How can I apply?
To apply, you will need details on what you owe, proof of debt on account, your National Insurance number and customer reference number.
From here, arrangements can be made for you to make payments directly from your benefits.