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Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Mobile calls to claim benefits go free

  • Published: Friday, 15 January 2010

From next week, call to claims benefits and pensions from a mobile phone will be free, the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) has said. Calls to the 0800 numbers affected are already free from BT land lines.

Most mobile calls to claim benefits will be free

Need to claim a benefit?

Call the national number: 0800 0 55 66 88

From next week, six of the biggest mobile phone network companies will no longer charge their customers for calls to DWP 0800 Benefit Claim lines.

Calls to claim benefits and state pension use 0800 numbers, and are already free to customers using BT land lines. But 12 per cent of UK households use only mobile phones.

Calls to around 70 of the DWP 0800 numbers will be free as of 18 January. These numbers are used by people making initial claims for benefit and pensions and to request emergency payments, such as crisis loans.

Dates for the call rate to change vary

The calls will be free from 18 January if your phone is with:

  • O2
  • Orange
  • Tesco Mobile
  • Vodafone

The free calls will start as of 25 January if your phone is with:

  • T-Mobile
  • Virgin Mobile

Together, the six companies with whom the DWP has signed agreements cover over 90 per cent of the UK’s mobile market.

Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Yvette Cooper, said: "We don't want people who lose their jobs or the poorest pensioners to be penalised when they need to claim benefits."

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