Jesus Fellowship

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    Chris Cook

    We have received a new claim from some one living in a property run by the Jesus Fellowship (Elders in house).

    We are aware of some case law R (H) 8/04 and have read this case.

    However we are unsure whether to treat this as a commercial tenancy or not.

    Has any one had any recent dealings in respect of the above.

    Any advice welcome.


    Are they a fully maintained order? Do they receive any income other than that provided by the Fellowship?

    Is the tenancy related to membership of the fellowship? If so, would there actually be an intention to terminate the tenancy if HB was not paid?


    I have some training notes that cover this case, but I don’t hold them electronically.

    If you give me your details I am happy to post or fax them to you.


    We have had one of these cases to Tribunal and our decison not to award HB was upheld. My understanding is that the Elders of the Church may be assessed for HB as they have the liability to pay rent – and there may then be an issue of other residents being treated as non-deps. On recepit of a claim the question should be asked ‘ are you a style 3 member’? as these people are deemed not to have a liability because it is a non commercial arrangement and they reside with their LL. It is possible though that the Fellowship have become wise to these issues – I have not seen an application for a couple of years so I don’t know how they describe their set up now.

    Darren W

    Chris it may pay for you to get in contact with Northampton Council. Though the Jesus Fellowship are located all over the UK, their main area is in and around Northampton.


    I would try contacting South Northants DC first, that is the real JF heartland and I know they had a lot of expertise on these cases when I was still living in the area.

    Andy Thurman

    I wanted to resurrect this post (no religious pun intended 😉 ), particularly regarding the difference between “elders” and “guests”. We are working through R(H)8/04 but wondered if there is are any other decisions and/or useful guidance on this subject.

    Has anyone ‘successfully’ treated elders as eligible but made them nil ent due to numerous NDD’s?

    Thanks for any input…


    Can i now resurrect this thread (religious pun definitely intended) and ask a rather silly question about CTB?…

    Obviously HB can be refused under HB Reg 9(1)(j), but what of the CTB?

    Our CTAX have made a couple liable who are wholly supported by their religious order. They haven’t made a claim for HB (so i don’t have any details as to whether the religious order pays for rent or mortgage) but there is an ongoing discussion as to how to treat the CTB claim.

    As far as i can see, if the couple are the liable persons for CTAX, then CTB can be considered, but others have argued that as their order covers their living costs that any CTAX liability would be covered too – but in my mind this doesn’t negate the fact the couple are the liable persons!

    So, if they ARE eligible to claim CTB… on what income should we assess? Their full living expenses are covered by the order, so would we ask them to confirm the amount they receive from the order each month and use that as miscellaneous income? Would we count these as charitable payments? Would we assess on nil income?

    Any comments or suggestions?





    If it has been decided that they are liable for CTAX, then I would say they have to be eligible for CTB. How you can decide that, in this one instance, some money they are getting covers CTAX so you are not going to consider CTB? In fact I would agree with you that even if the order explicitly stated that some of the money was for CTAX, they would still be eligible for CTB on the basis of their liability.

    I would guess that the money they get is charitable or voluntary payments, so it would be disregarded.

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