Housing Benefit Interim Payments

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    Housing Benefit Interim Payments

    I have tenants in a property at the moment who are in receipt of housing benefit. They fell into two months arrears today & rather than serve a section 8 notice I sought some legal advice. I was told that BY LAW the council must make an interim payment if they have all the information to process a claim within 14 days. Has anyone ever come across this before & what sort of payment did you recieve?

    In practice, the council will still be waiting for something or other and I list the common problems below:-

    1. Proof of residency by written agreement/rent book.
    2. Proof of income
    3. Verification Framework visit
    4. For Social Security claimants, the DWP to confirm benefit.
    5. Other unspecified query - claim form not completed correctly - date of birth dont match/query on income etc. etc.

    and they have to commence paying out within 14 days of obtaining all the information they require and seeing as your tenants are two months in arrear, whether it is Housing Benefit or Local Housing Allowance, they must pay to you as landlord.

    What usually happens is the when the claim is submitted, certain parts of the jigsaw are completed immediately and others follow on and it can be just one little bit that holds the whole process up.

    Best thing is to keep in touch with the council and keep notes of when you contacted them, who you spoke to and the result. They can make interim payments based on the likely amount of HB/LHA but tend not to do this often because it is the same process for this as it is to send the correct amount in the first place.


      My experience is that HB usually takes 10 - 12 weeks before being settled but if it goes over three months they make a decision. Last time this happened to me, the tenant received £15 per week less than she was entitled to, an appeal takes another three months! (ongoing situation).


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