Lump Sum Payments of DHP

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  • #19540
    AndrewDonald
    Participant

    In my authority we award DHP on a weekly basis for a set period and review the award at the end of the period (no “benefit” periods abolished here!).

    I have on occassion wanted to award a lump sum towards their rent liability where the claimant has shown an inability to meet their essential expenditure (rent/ctax) over a period going back several months. The award would not be calculated weekly because it would get complicated (the award of HB going up and down some cash payments being made to the rent account). however each time I have been persuaded that what I would be doing is merely paying of their arrears and that I cant do that.

    I dont see anywhere in the regs where it says I cant make a lump sum payment towards their rent liability. The claimants have all demonstrated an inability to pay their rent during the period in question and have qualified for some housing benefit throughout the period.

    Can I make a DHP under these circumstances? Is it just clearing their arrears? Is this illegal? Why?

    #63505
    chris harvey
    Participant

    DHP’s cannot be awarded to cover a rent increase due to rent arrears. This is not the same as rent arrears. Often claimants having difficulty paying their rent and apply for a DHP. These can be awarded retrospectively to cover an amount of their shortfall between their HB and their rent charge in the past. The result is a lump sum of arrears. This is perfectly legal and is a common practice.
    Hope this helps

    #63506
    AndrewDonald
    Participant

    Thanks Chris.

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