Pension Credit co ownership of property

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    We have a customer who was previously on Income Support this ceased on 27/9/04 when she reached 60. There has been a delay over her Pension Credit, I telephoned DWP and was told that she co owns a property with her ex husband, she left due to fear of violence in Oct 01 went to a refuge and then was rehoused in sheltered, has been on IS ever since. Now PC are involved they will not pay her Pension Credit because of the 26 week ruling, even though the property is not likely to be put up for sale as her husband is disabled.

    I understand the HB/CTB should also not be in payment this lady is only in receipt of £49.00 retirement pension. Is this correct


    This would be capital that would have to be taken account of under reg 21, (HB60+ regs), if the claimant is to be treated as possessing it. Under reg 25(1) HB 60+ regs, it also says that nothing counts as income unless the law says it does.
    The law says that property is taken into account unless it falls into a disregarded category.
    You are quite correct in the application of the 26 week rule in this case. This is extended for 26 weeks from the date of the property being put on the market for sale. (HB 60+regs sched 5ZA para 6). This can be extended if it is reasonable to do so.
    However, if the lady in question has a reversionary interest in the property, it is disregarded. (HB 60+regs sched 5ZA para 5).
    If there is any outstanding mortgage on the property this is disregarded. (HB 60+ regs 40(a)).
    So I would argue that unless the lady has taken steps to establish her right to half the property in law with a view to selling this, you are correct in treating this as capital in any HB / CTB assessment.
    If I was advising her as to her rights, I would advise her to persue this latter course of action, as this would establish either her right to the property or the fact that she was denied access to her capital, in which case you could argue that she had tried to secure her rights the property in order to effect a sale, but was unable to access this due to any order imposed by the relevent courts. 😕

    You may be able to guess that I have just been doing some training for some of our staff on second properties and how to value! :23:


    Many thanks for your input, I will pass this to our local CAB as the lady in question has been advised to contact them as she herself is not able mentally to pursue this on her own.

    Once again many thanks.

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