Created 09/05/2019

The government has issued guidance to local authorities-

'8. It has been brought to DWP’s attention that some Universal Credit (UC) claimants, who we direct to claim HB because they believe they live in specified accommodation, are not being signposted back to UC to claim support with housing costs if the LA subsequently decides that the accommodation does not meet the specified accommodation criteria to award HB.

9. UC are not aware of these LA decisions, therefore, in these circumstances all such claimants must be advised by the LA that they need to re-declare housing costs as part of their UC claim as follows:

The accommodation you live in does not meet the criteria for supported accommodation so you are not eligible to claim Housing Benefit. To claim support with housing costs you must declare a change in circumstances to Universal Credit and declare either ‘I rent from a council or housing association’

or ‘I rent from a private landlord’. You must not declare ‘I’m in supported or sheltered accommodation’.

10. This advice should be provided either as part of the HB decision notice, by a separate notification or through a separate conversation with the UC claimant as part of a sign-posting conversation.

11. If you have any queries regarding the content of this article you can send them to housing.benefitenquiries@dwp.gov.uk '.

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