Discretionary housing payments

If you are getting housing benefit but are still finding it hard to pay your rent, you may be able to get extra help by applying for a Discretionary Housing Payments (DHPs). If you are no longer claiming Housing Benefit because you now claim Universal Credit, you can still apply for Discretionary Housing Payment.

The funds available under this scheme are limited and we can only help residents who need it most. Usually we will only grant DHP for a limited period after which the decision is re-assessed.

 

What do DHPs not cover?

  • parts of rent not covered by housing benefit, for example; charges for fuel, hot water or meals
  • charges for water and sewerage
  • increases in rent due to rent arrears (missed rent payments)
  • housing benefit that has been suspended because you have failed to provide the information we need for your claim
  • any deduction in benefits as a result of you not going to a work-focused interview or an employment sanction (left paid work voluntarily or due to missed conduct).
  • any reduction in benefit due to a reduced benefit direction (the Department for Work and Pensions reclaiming an overpayment) or you failing to arrange maintenance with the Child Support Agency

 

How to apply

To apply for DHP you need to complete an application form. To request a form please contact us.

 

How do we decide who gets DHPs?

The following things are looked at when making a decision:

  • whether you have attempted to remedy the situation yourself
  • your total weekly income
  • your total weekly outgoings
  • whether you have any savings
  • whether anyone else in the household can help financially
  • whether you have any loans for debts still to pay
  • whether you could re-arrange any of your finances to help the situation
  • whether you or your family have any special health or disability problems

 

How much will I get?

It depends on your circumstances because each case is looked at individually. If we decide that we can make a payment, we will write to tell you how much you will be paid and for how long.

If you are successful, DHPs are paid with your normal housing benefit

Appeals

If you disagree with the decision about an application for DHP you can ask for us to look at the matter again. You will need to do this is writing within one month of the date of the decision letter stating clearly the reasons why you disagree.

You cannot appeal to the an Independent Tribunal about a DHP decision.

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