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Social Bonus: what is it and how to request it?

The new Royal Decree Law 18/2022 introduces changes to the electricity Social Bonus effective 20 October 2022. For consumers who previously received the Social Bonus, their percentage discounts have increased as have the limits of energy consumption entitled to a discount (additional 15%).

 

What is the Social Bonus?

The Social Bonus is a significant discount on electricity bills. It is regulated by the government and aims to protect households considered vulnerable or severely vulnerable on account of their socio-economic conditions. Being a beneficiary of the Social Bonus also implies receiving the Social Thermal Bonus as defined by the Government.

 

Who can benefit from the new Social Rate?

To benefit from the Social Bonus, it is essential for the recipient to be a natural person and have contracted the PVPC electricity rate and a power equal to or less than 10 kilowatts at their primary residence.  

Applicants can apply for the Social Bonus if their income does not exceed certain income levels, if they are a pensioner, large family or recipient of the minimum wage, as detailed below.

 

What are the requirements to be considered vulnerable or severely vulnerable?

Vulnerable customers

Those who are holders of a regulated tariff contract (PVPC) and meet at least four of the following conditions are considered to be vulnerable customers:

1. Annual income less than or equal to the limits established according to the IPREM (Public Indicator of Multiple Effect Income) in 14 payments:

  • 1.5 times the IPREM*: If he/she is not part of a cohabitation unit or there are no dependant minors.
  • 0.3 times the IPREM for each additional member of legal age.
  • 0.5 times the IPREM for each minor in the cohabitation unit.

*IPREM 14 payments valid for 2022: €8,106.28.

For example, to be entitled to the Social Bonus as a vulnerable consumer in the case of a couple with two children, the maximum income is €22,698.

Units of coexistence consist of the people who reside at the same address and who are connected to each other:

  • By marriage or as a domestic partnership.
  • Related up to the second degree of consanguinity/affinity: Children, spouse, parents, parents-in-law, sons-in-law and daughters-in-law, grandparents, siblings, grandchildren and brothers/sisters-in-law.
  • By adoption, and other persons with who you live by virtue of guardianship for the purpose of adoption or permanent family fostering.
  • In no case may the same person be part of two or more cohabitation units.

All these thresholds will be increased by 0.5 times the IPREM if any of the following requirements are met:

  • If any member of the cohabitation unit has a recognised disability equal to or greater than 33%, has been a victim of gender violence or has been a victim of terrorism.
  • If a member of the cohabitation unit is in a situation of recognised grade 2 or 3 dependency.
  • If it can be accredited that the cohabitation unit consists of a single parent and at least one minor (single-parent families).

2. Pensioners in the Social Security System (retirement or permanent disability): applicants (or in case of a cohabitation unit, all its members in receipt of income) receive the minimum pension (for retirement or permanent disability). In addition, if they have another source of income apart from their pension, the annual value of this income must not exceed €500.

3. Large families: all, without exceptions, that present a valid large family accreditation.

4. Recipients of the minimum wage: if the consumer or any member of the cohabitation unit is a beneficiary of the minimum wage in accordance with the provisions of Law 19/2021, of 20 December, establishing the minimum wage.

From 20 October 2022 and until 31 December 2023, beneficiaries of the Social Bonus considered vulnerable will receive extraordinary discounts on energy (subject to the consumption threshold set out below) and power in their bill of up to 65%.

 

Severely vulnerable customers

Those who are holders of a regulated tariff contract (PVPC) and meet at least three of the following conditions are considered to be severely vulnerable customers:

  1. Income: receive an annual income less than or equal to 50% of the income thresholds established to be considered a vulnerable customer, including, where appropriate, the increase set out for cases in which "special circumstances" occur.
  2. Pensioners in the Social Security System (retirement or permanent disability): all members of the family unit are Social Security pensioners, receive the minimum pension (for retirement or permanent disability) and have an annual income less than or equal to 1 time the IPREM (€8,106.28).
  3. Officially registered large family: those whose annual income is less than 2 times the IPREM (€16,212.65).
  4. Minimum wage: If the customer or any member of their cohabitation unit is a recipient of the minimum, the income criteria defined in point one will be applied.

From 20 October 2022 and until 31 December 2023, beneficiaries of the Social Bonus considered severely vulnerable will receive extraordinary discounts on energy (subject to the consumption threshold set out below) and power in their bill of up to 80%.

Where they meet the requirements, severely vulnerable customers are entitled to a 40% discount on their bill, with limits to annual consumption. They currently benefit from an extraordinary discount of 80% which is valid until 31 December 2023.

 

Severely vulnerable customers at risk of social exclusion

This special category encompasses those who meet the following two conditions:

  • They are considered severely vulnerable customers (see above).
  • They receive support from the social services of a regional or local administration co-financing at least 50% of their electricity bills.

In these circumstances, the beneficiary of the Social Bonus will enjoy a discount on the electricity bill of 80% (severely vulnerable consumer) and will be considered an essential customer for the purposes of supply cuts.

 

Other vulnerable or severely vulnerable customers deemed essential for the purposes of supply cuts

In addition to the above, vulnerable or severely vulnerable consumers who meet the following conditions and are accredited in a report from Social Services, will also be considered essential for the purposes of supply cuts:

  • Cohabitation unit with at least one child under the age of 16
  • Any member of the cohabitation unit has a recognised disability equal to or greater than 33%.
  • Any member of the cohabitation unit is in a situation of recognised grade 2 or 3 dependency.

 

New electricity social bonus: energy justice bonus

The government has approved the 40% discount on the regulated electricity tariff (known as the PVPC) for low-income households that are particularly affected by the energy crisis.  

This new temporary bonus will be applied until 31 December 2023 and will not be compatible with the Thermal Social Bonus.

Households whose income is 1.5 to 2 times the IPREM in 14 paymentswill be eligible, with the multipliers applied to the conventional Social Bonus.  

For example, in 2022, an adult with an income of less than 16,213 euros per year or a family of four with an income of less than 26,751 euros per year will be eligible for the new energy justice bonus. As shown in the tables below:

VALID NEW CATEGORY
1 adult 12.159,4€ 16.213€
1 adult + 1 child 20.265,7€ 24.319€
2 adults 14.591,30€ 18.644€
2 adults + 1 child 18.644,44€ 22.698€
2 adults + 2 children 22.697,58€ 26.751€

Maximum annual income (€).

VALID NEW CATEGORY
1 adult 12.600€ 16.800€
1 adult + 1 child 21.000€ 25.200€
2 adults 15.120€ 19.320€
2 adults + 1 child 19.320€ 23.520€
2 adults + 2 children 23.520€ 27.720€

Maximum annual income (€).

COVID-19 Social Bonus

On account of COVID-19, there is a legislative extension (RDL 8/2021) that favours certain groups affected by coronavirus.

As a result, they can also apply for the Social Bonus:

  • The unemployed.
  • People on furlough.
  • Employers, who have seen their working hours reduced due to reasons related to care or other similar circumstances that involve a substantial loss of income.

 

What are the requirements for the new Covid-19 Social Bonus?

Certain income requirements must be met. In the month before the submission of the application, the income of the members of the cohabitation unit must fall within the following thresholds:

 

INCOME THRESHOLDS FOR COVID-19 SUBSIDISED RATE

Type of family unit family unit income in the month prior to requesting the subsidised rate Special circumstances
No dependent minors / Not part of the family unit. 1,5 x IPREM (Public Income Indicator of Multiple Effects) (14 payments) monthly. 2 x IPREM (Public Income Indicator of Multiple Effects) (14 payments) monthly.
1 dependent minor.
2 x IPREM (Public Income Indicator of Multiple Effects) (14 payments) monthly.
2,5 x IPREM (Public Income Indicator of Multiple Effects) (14 payments) monthly.
2 dependent minors.
2,5 x IPREM (Public Income Indicator of Multiple Effects) (14 payments) monthly.
3 x IPREM (Public Income Indicator of Multiple Effects) (14 payments) monthly.

*IPREM 14 PAYMENTS (as of 2022) €8.106,28

 

Since when have these COVID measures been applicable?

Since 28 October 2021, those who meet the requirements detailed above and apply for the Social Bonus will be considered vulnerable and will get a 65% discount on their electricity bill.

In any case, the condition of vulnerable consumer and the right to receive the Covid-19 Social Bonus (unemployment, furlough, etc.), will end on 31 December 2022. From then on, all those affected may apply for the Social Bonus but only in line with the usual requirements.

 

Restrictions on electricity consumption

Social Bonus discounts on the total bill are subject to electricity consumption restrictions. Once this limit has been exceeded, energy will be invoiced in accordance with the prices in the regulated tariff (PVPC), without discount.

RDL 18/2022 extends the energy kilowatt-hours threshold that provides en entitlement to a discount for all beneficiaries of the Social Bonus by 15%, as follows:

Consumer category Maximum annual consumption limit (kWh)
  • Individual applicant.
  • Cohabitation unit formed by two people.

1.587

  • Cohabitation unit formed by three people.
  • Cohabitation unit formed by two people, one of whom is a minor.
  • Pensioners.

2.222

  • Cohabitation unit formed by four people.
  • Cohabitation unit formed by three people, two of whom are minors.

2.698

  • Cohabitation unit formed by five or more people.
  • Cohabitation unit formed by four people, two of whom are minors.
  • Officially registered large family.

4.761

Applying is free

Fraudulent websites have been detected that charge a fee in exchange for handling the application for the Social Bonus. Please remember that applying for the Social Bonus is absolutely free of charge. Do not agree to pay to open an application and do not give out your card number.

 

What documentation do you need to request the Social Rate

What documentation do I need to have

Where to find the documentation

Documentation
Vulnerable / Severely vulnerable consumer
Where can you obtain the documentation
Social Rate Form completed and signed by the entire family unit.
-
  • Asking one of the leading suppliers.
Photocopy of the NIF or NIE of the holder and all members of the family unit (including those above the age of 14 capable of working and those younger than 14 who have one).
- -
In the event the holder forms part of a family unit, the family register or certification of the individual sheet of the Civil Registry for each one of the members of the family unit. In the event of not forming part of a family unit, the individual sheet of the Civil Register or any document issued by the competent authority that accredits the civil status of the applicant.
-
  • Civil Registry
  • Competent authority
Valid (non expired) City registration, individual or group, of the holder and all members of the family unit.
-
  • Offices of Citizen Services
  • Town Councils
Photocopy of a valid large family card.
Only applicable to large families.
  • Offices of Citizen Services
  • Family Departments in Regional Social Services Offices
Social Services Certificate from the competent agency of from one designated by the autonomous Community, certifying Special Circumstances:
  • Disability equal to or greater than 33%.
  • Victim of gender violence.
  • Victim of terrorism.
  • Dependency recognized grades II and III.
  • Single-parent families: A single parent and at least one minor. (you only need the official family registration book).
Only applicable to Special Circumstances.
  • Department of Social Affairs
  • Base Centres of the Social Services Offices
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How to apply for the Social Rate

The social rebate is part of the regulated energy market. As such, regulated market traders (leading suppliers) are the only power companies authorised to offer the social rebate.

Endesa is a free-market company. In order to apply for the social rebate, you must contact one of the regulated market traders. They will handle procedures and inform you whether your application has been accepted or rejected:

Has your Social Bonus expired? Find out what you need to do to renew your Social Bonus.

Comparison of Electricity and Gas Tariffs

You don't need to adapt to Endesa's tariffs because they adapt to you. If you go to our catalogue you can compare the different tariffs for yourself. Or if you prefer, you can answer a few questions and we will take care of comparing all the different electricity and gas tariffs and then make a customised recommendation.

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