Universal Credit has replaced Housing Benefit for most people, except for those who are:
- are of State Pension age but check because this changes if you are a couple and only one of you is of State Pension age
- qualify for or get the severe disability premium
- live in 'supported exemption accommodation' which is generally a hostel or sheltered accommodation.
If you are already claiming Housing Benefit, you will remain on that benefit until your circumstances change, but if you are making a new claim, you will now have to claim Universal Credit.
The amount of help you receive will depend on:
- The amount of rent and/or Council Tax you pay
- Whether anyone else (such as lodgers or grown-up children) lives with you
- The amount of money you have coming in each week
- The amount the Government says you need to live on
- Any savings of other assets eg an interest in another property
How we pay Housing Benefit
We pay Housing Benefit every two weeks in arrears and this is paid direct to the tenant. We make these payments by BACS directly into your bank account; so please ensure that you provide us with your up to date bank details.
For those claimants who have their rent paid directly to their landlord, we pay them every four weeks in arrears.
You can request for the claim for benefit to be backdated for up to 1 month, however you need to show continuous good cause for a backdate to be accepted. Good cause is a reason to why you did not claim earlier. Please provide as much evidence as possible to support your request. Remember we will need proof of all your income and capital for any period we consider backdating for.
If you or your partner are the qualify age for pension credit, you can request for the claim to be backdated for the previous 3 months without having to show continuous good cause. We will need proof of all your income and capital for any period we consider backdating for.