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Housing Benefit (England, Scotland and Wales) - How do I claim Housing Benefit?

Find out more about Housing Benefit (England, Scotland and Wales).

How do I claim Housing Benefit?

Get a claim form by contacting your local authority Housing Benefit office.

You may be able to claim online or by telephone if your local authority offers this facility.

If you are making a claim for Income Support, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, or Pension Credit you can claim Housing Benefit at the same time, your details will be sent directly to your local authority.

Rapid reclaims

To make a claim, you may be able to fill in a shortened form known as a 'rapid reclaim'. To fill in a rapid reclaim, you must have made a claim for Income Support, Incapacity Benefit or income-based Jobseeker's Allowance before, within the last 26 weeks. You must also be claiming this benefit again and your circumstances must not have changed since your last claim.

What documents will I need to claim Housing Benefit?

When you claim Housing Benefit, you must give your national insurance number and evidence of who you are, for example, a birth certificate or driving licence. You also need to give evidence that you must pay the rent, for example, your rent book or tenancy agreement.

If you are not claiming benefits like Income Support, you must give evidence of your income and savings, for example, bank statements or pay slips.

When will my Housing Benefit claim begin?

Housing Benefit can be backdated for up to one month if you would have been entitled to it earlier. You have to show a good reason for not claiming sooner. Request this when claiming.

If you or your partner are over Pension Credit age and you are not getting Income Support or income-based Jobseeker's Allowance, your claim can be backdated for up to three months. It does not matter why your claim is late. Request this when claiming.

Change of circumstances

You must report changes in your circumstances which might affect your entitlement to this benefit.

 

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