NEW RULES FOR PENSIONERS POST OCT 04

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  • #20274
    Anonymous
    Guest

    I am currently reading circular A29-2004 regarding the new rules for pensioner claims.

    Can anyone please clarify the following: Example 4 regarding a claim made 7/3/05, weekly rent liability started 27/1/05. LA should consider entitlement for the 12month period prior to claim date ie 7/3/04. However, as liability to pay rent only commenced 27/1/05 then entitlement will begin from 24/1/05 ie the monday of the week in which date of claim falls.

    Just say this person had not claimed before at a previous address but it would appear they would have had entitlement. Are we supposed to consider entitlement on old address from 7/3/04 to 23/1/05??

    Confused? 🙄

    #2583
    simondoyle
    Participant

    Lynn,

    In example 4 you have to assume that the claimant did not have a rent liability prior to 27.1.05. So to answer your question, if at their previous address they had a rent liability then yes I would say ‘date of claim is 7.3.04’ and you would need to enquire as to the claimant’s income and circumstances for the period.

    In my opinion this is a poorly written circular and is perhaps trying to make things more difficult that it actually is.

    Why can’t it just say: “Date of claim = date claim is actually made less 12 months and 1 day, unless:
    the claimant/partner only became 60 in the last 12 months and one day, if so the date of claim is the day they became 60; or
    they only became eligible for HB/CTB on a day later than the day 12 months and one day ago (!!!!)”

    Is my interpretation correct or am I missing something!

    #2584
    simondoyle
    Participant

    Lynn,

    In example 4 you have to assume that the claimant did not have a rent liability prior to 27.1.05. So to answer your question, if at their previous address they had a rent liability then yes I would say ‘date of claim is 7.3.04’ and you would need to enquire as to the claimant’s income and circumstances for the period.

    In my opinion this is a poorly written circular and is perhaps trying to make things more difficult that it actually is.

    Why can’t it just say: “Date of claim = date claim is actually made less 12 months and 1 day, unless:
    the claimant/partner only became 60 in the last 12 months and one day, if so the date of claim is the day they became 60; or
    they only became eligible for HB/CTB on a day later than the day 12 months and one day ago (!!!!)”

    Is my interpretation correct or am I missing something!

    #2585
    Anonymous
    Guest

    I agree Simon. Thanks for that.

    I think the circular is far from crystal clear. I am trying to prepare a simple note for staff so as not to cause confusion but typically, things seem to be as clear as mud!!

    Your interperetation is spot on in my eyes but then perhaps I am missing something too!!

    Appreciate the response, just dont want to mislead anyone!!!

    😕

    #2586
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Simon, as you were kind enough to reply I wonder if I could ask you for your further opinion?

    The wording in the circular states that ‘in practice a person will claim and the LA will consider whether entitlement to HB/CTB existed during the 12 months prior to the actual date of claim’.

    What exactly are they trying to say here? How can we consider whether entitlement may have existed, surely its a case of allowing them to claim for the 12month 1 day period preceding date of actual claim and dependant on the income/capital provided for that period whether they will qualify or not? The way this reads is that we would sit and manually calculate whether entitlement would have existed??? Or does it meant to say ‘decide whether eligibility existed’.

    Sorry but I just dont find it clearly put.

    #2587
    simondoyle
    Participant

    Lynn,

    My interpretation of it is that we would determine if eligibility existed using primary legislation, e.g. liability to a rent/Ctax charge, capital less than £16,000, low income. The big question of course is how old are they and was the claimant/partner aged at least 60 throughout the 12 month+1 day period.

    That’s how I’ve read it anyway!

    Anyone else want to throw in an opinion. I am briefing my staff on this on Wednesday in the absence of my training officer and would like someone else to tell me I’ve got it right!!!!

    #2588
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Thanks again Simon. You seem to be interpereting it the same way as I am. Its my concern too that I am getting it right!

    I think the wording is slightly vague and that last point just emphasises that. Surely it would have been safer to have said ‘eligibility’ as opposed to the way it was put.

    😯 all very mind boggling for a Monday!

    Its always more than helpful to get a second opinion so thanks again.

    #2589
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Simon,
    I’m not sure I agree, sorry.
    A customer turns 60 on 8.12.04 and is eligible for HB/CTB from 13.12.04. They will be allowed up to 13.12.05 to claim.
    A claim is made on 13.12.05 and can be paid from 13.12.04.
    However if you apply your interpretation:
    “Date of claim = date claim is actually made less 12 months and 1 day, unless:
    the claimant/partner only became 60 in the last 12 months and one day, if so the date of claim is the day they became 60;” it would be incorrect.

    Date of claim 13.12.05 less 12 months & 1 day = 13.12.04 (and customer did not turn 60 in that period – turned 60 on 8.12.04), therefore the date of entitlement would be 20.12.04 for your customer.

    The way DWP have worded is therefore relevant.
    Would you agree or have I read it totally wrong?

    #2590
    simondoyle
    Participant

    Gill,

    Whilst the date of claim would be 13.12.04, the first day of entitlement would be 20.12.04 (normal “following Monday” rules apply – see para 20 of the circular).

    If they first became eligible on 13.12.04 because they first became liable for a rent charge on that day then you are right – the first day of entitlement in this case would be 13.12.04 (new HB reg 65(5)) – see paras 22-24 of the same circular.

    #2591
    Mark
    Participant

    OK – how about this:

    The new rules apply if:

    * the claimant or any partner are aged 60 or over, and

    * neither the claimant nor any partner receive Income Support or JSA(IB).

    It does not matter whether Pension Credit has been claimed or awarded.

    If these rules apply the “date of claim” will be:

    * The same date in the previous year, or

    * The claimant’s 60th birthday (or partner’s 60th birthday if earlier), or

    * The first date on which HB/CTB could actually have been awarded,

    Whichever is later.

    The first day of entitlment is worked out according to the normal rules (i.e. dependant on the date of claim and whether this is in the same week as liability commenced).

    #2592
    simondoyle
    Participant

    Mark – I agree

    #2593
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Mark, thank you, that makes it much clearer.

    Just 1 query though – “It does not matter whether Pension Credit has been claimed or awarded.”
    – this would matter if the PC award had been backdated to October 2003 in December 2004 for instance. The claim date would then be in line with The Pension Serice date of claim, as normal wouldn’t it.

    #2594
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Thanks Mark, thats really helpful.

    Think I am getting my head around it!

    #2595
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Mark,

    I have just looked at this again and I am no longer sure that following your notes would award HB/CTB from the correct date.
    Same example as before customer turns 60 on 8.12.04 and has up to 13.12.05 to claim for entitlement to HB/CTB from 13.12.04.

    Following your notes the claim date would work back to 13.12.04 and therefore (assuming no new liability for rent/council tax) the entitlement date would be 20.12.04 instead of 13.12.04.

    Why is nothing straight forward?

    #2596
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Surely if the claimant turns 60 on the 8th of December, they have up to and including 12 December next year to make a claim that will stretch back to the BW including 8/12/04, in which case they will be entitled from 13/12/04?

    Whereas if they leave it until 13 December next year to make a claim, they will forfeit a week. And another if they leave it until 20 December next year. And so on…

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