Intention to claim…a backdate?

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    Claimant vacated property in early October 2005. No benefit claim at that time.

    Contacts benefit office in September 2006. Not sure about exact telephone conversation, but it appears she requested that her claim be back-dated as during the last six months of her tenancy, she was only in receipt of SSP (now being chased for C.Tax arrears). Claim form was marked as issued in September 2006 and was returned within one month in October 2006.

    Ignoring the issue of whether the claimant has continuous good cause, we have stated we cannot back-date claim as it is more than 52 weeks. However, claimant is asking why we cannot go back 52 weeks from date of telephone request and pay for a couple of weeks. Claimant is stating she was told simply to return the form within a month.

    Now, I know the Aylesbury Vale case states that when considering the 52 week period, you look at the date of the request for back-date, and not the initial claim. I also know all claims must be in writing etc.

    However, I’m just wondering where this all sits with the new intention to claim regs. It seems quite clear that claimant indicated in her telephone call that she wanted to claim back-dated benefit. Can you have an intention to claim back-dated benefit…?

    Kevin D

    I’ll take a punt. Having taken a look at the structure of [b:f25c33e10b]HBR 83(5)[/b:f25c33e10b], My initial reaction was, yes, why shouldn’t “intention” be applicable to backdating?

    HBR 83(5) starts:
    [quote:f25c33e10b]Subject to paragraph (10), and to regulation 84 (date of claim where claim sent or delivered to a gateway office) the date on which a claim is made shall be[/quote:f25c33e10b]

    There is no mention of the provision being subject to para 12, unlike para 10. That appears to suggest para 12 can be considered.

    HBR 83(5)(d) then only excludes sub paras a to c of para 5. No exclusion of para 12.

    But, the snag is, para 12 refers to when a claim can be “treated” as made. Intention also refers to when a claim can be “treated” as made. The use of the word “treated” suggests they are both deeming provisions. Cmmrs have, on more than one occasion, made it clear that one deeming provision should not be used to support another, unless specific provision is made.

    Following that line of thought, I have a sneeky suspicion that “intention” cannot be used in respect of backdating. But, this is a fairly tentative view….



    And what happens if you accept that the intention to claim phone-call is a claim for backdating, but then the claiamnt never returns the form? Does the phone-call stand alone as a backdating claim? I wouldn’t have thought so.


    [quote:7dd42f9f6c]And what happens if you accept that the intention to claim phone-call is a claim for backdating, but then the claiamnt never returns the form? [/quote:7dd42f9f6c]

    I’m not really sure that is an issue. If someone rings up and requests a claim form for [i:7dd42f9f6c]on-going benefit[/i:7dd42f9f6c], and doesn’t return it, we don’t treat that as a claim.

    The more I think about it, the more I think it can be allowed.

    Reg 12 states a claim shall be treated as made on…the day 52 weeks before the [b:7dd42f9f6c]date of the claim[/b:7dd42f9f6c] for back-dating.

    What defines the date of the claim?

    Surely that is (amongst others) Reg 83(5), which states the date on which a claim is made shall be…the date the claimant first notified the authority of his intention to claim.

    As far as I can see Reg 83(5)(d) doesn’t refer to ‘treating’ a claim as being made at an earlier date, rather it talks about the date of the claim ‘shall be’…

    I think (because of Aylesbury Vale) it could only apply where there is an express intention to claim [i:7dd42f9f6c]back-dated[/i:7dd42f9f6c] benefit, which I accept is going to be a rare occurance.

    Kevin D

    Lifted from a recent post for info:

    [quote:d06acd871b]Just to clarify, an “intention” is not a “claim” ([b:d06acd871b]R(IS) 10/06 (aka CIS 2726 2005)[/b:d06acd871b]).

    As an aside, it can be a fine line between a an “intention” and a “claim” where written correspondence is involved. If someone puts in writing “I intend to claim”, that is almost certainly an intention. But, if the wording is “Please accept this as my claim”, that is almost certainly a claim (albeit probably not made in accordance with HBR 83(1). [/quote:d06acd871b]


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