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Housing Benefit payments

Once we have your fully completed claim form together with the supporting evidence as detailed on the form, we will advise you of the Housing Benefit decision in writing.

To see a breakdown of your benefit award, go to your online account.

It’s important that you check the letters we send you and the details on your online account. If you think we’ve made a mistake, you need to let us know immediately.

If there’s anything you do not understand, you can ask us to explain in more detail, but you must do this within one month of the date of the letter we send you.

How Housing Benefit is paid

We pay Housing Benefit in different ways:

  • housing association tenants – we pay you or your landlord into a bank account
  • private tenants – into your bank or building society account and in certain cases we can also pay your landlord
  • council tenants – directly to your rent account

The Local Housing Allowance scheme has a range of safeguards to protect the interests of tenants and landlords. For example, we can make direct payments to a landlord where the tenant is eight weeks or more in arrears with their rent, and vulnerable tenants can have their Housing Benefit paid directly to their landlord.

Please refer to the Dorset Authorities Safeguards for tenants and landlords document.


Backdating – State Pension Credit-qualifying age

If you or your partner are of State Pension Credit-qualifying age and qualify for Housing Benefit, we can backdate your benefit up to three months before the date your claim is received, provided you were entitled to benefit for that period.

We do not need to know why you did not claim sooner to backdate your benefit. For us to work out how much benefit you will be entitled to, you need to give us proof of your income, savings and rent for the period you want to claim.

Backdating – working age

If you or your partner are of working age and have a good reason for not claiming Housing Benefit earlier, you can ask us to consider backdating your claim.

If you think you have a good reason for making a claim late, you should tell us in writing straight away. You must tell us the period you want to backdate your Housing Benefit for and why your claim is late.

The maximum period that can be considered for backdating is up to one month from the date of the request.

Each backdating claim is considered on its individual circumstances. We'll consider other things which may have affected your ability to claim such as your age, health and other circumstances.

Not knowing you could claim Housing Benefit is not normally considered to be ‘good cause’.

Please contact us for any help you need with Housing Benefit.

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