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How do we access financial aid for our heating oil costs in France?

We look at the measures the government has put in place to help with rising bills

We look at the financial support available for people who heat their homes using heating oil in France Pic: ID-VIDEO / Shutterstock

Reader Question: Can we get any financial aid to help with our heating oil costs? 

People who heat their homes using oil may be entitled to the chèque énergie exceptionnel opération fioul, depending on their income.

This cheque is on top of the ordinary energy cheque (chèque énergie) that is sent out each spring to help lower-income households with energy bills and also in addition to the chèque énergie exceptionnel one-off cheque which were sent out at the end of 2022.

If you already had an energy cheque last year and used it to buy heating oil, you should automatically receive an additional opération fioul cheque for up to €200. 

If you use heating oil in your home but did not receive an energy cheque last year, you can apply for the new cheque here

You will need to provide a heating oil bill from the last 18 months to prove that you qualify. You will then receive the payment next month. 

If you are on a collective heating oil plan, you need to fill in this form before applying.

The heating oil cheque cannot be used to gain money back on previous bills but can be applied to any future energy bill including electricity, gas and wood pellets. 

This means that those who have already filled up their oil tank for the winter will still be able to benefit. 

The cheque will remain valid until March 31, 2024.

Read more: Explainer: Who will receive France's €100-€200 extra energy aid

Read more: Extra €100-€200 state aid planned for French homes using heating oil

Who qualifies?

If you are deemed eligible, you will receive a cheque for €100-€200 depending on your income. 

This aid is reserved for households whose revenu fiscal de référence (net taxable income) is less than €20,000 per unité de consommation.

A unité de consommation is calculated as follows: 

  • First person in the household = one unit 

  • Second person in the household = 0.5 units 

  • Additional people in the household = 0.3 units 

Households with a revenu fiscal de référence of less than €10,800 per unit will receive €200, while those with an income of more than €10,800 but less than €20,000 will get €100.

You can check your eligibility by entering details relating to your household situation in this government simulator

A physical cheque will be sent out in the post, which you can send or give to your heating oil supplier. If posting it, include any customer details so they can easily identify you. It is suggested that you also put your customer number on the back of the cheque, if relevant.

There is a free helpline for questions about the energy cheque (in French) at 0805 204 805.

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