Claimant’s former home – owned property

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    Can anyone give me some advice on how they would deal with this claim?

    I have a claimant who jointly owns his own home with his wife. However, he has had to leave the marital home and move into a hostel as he is an alcoholic and was recently sectioned under the mental health act as he threatened his wife with a knife. He has the intention to return home once he has sorted out his alcoholism and mental health problems.

    He has made a claim for HB/CTB at the hostel and is claiming Incapacity Benefit and DLA. However, I’m not sure whether I have to treat his former home as capital as: a) he has the intention to return to the property and therefore he is not ‘estranged’ from his wife; b) his wife is living in the property on her own and is not a single parent or elderly person.

    Also, his wife has made a claim for CTB on her own. Should her husband be treated as part of the claim as they are not ‘estranged’ and are still a couple, but living apart.

    If it were the other way round and he were fleeing violence, there’d be no problem and he would be granted benefit on both properties, but as he’s the violent person and has removed himself from the property, I’m not sure how to proceed. I’d like to disregard the property as I feel he needs to be away from the home and claim HB/CTB to allow him to remain in the hostel, but I can’t see anywhere in the regs that allows me to do that.

    Any thoughts or ideas would be greatly appreciated 💡 😀


    The propertuy is disregarded without time limit in this situation. It is exactly what Para 4(b) of Schedule 6 is for. They have stopped living together and have become disaggregated as a couple for means-testing purposes for the foreseeable future; however, they have not ceased to be an item and still consider themselves to be in a marriage. They are therefore not estranged – it is just that circumstances force them to maintain separate homes.

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