Weekly Liability – Start Date

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  • #23154
    graeme
    Participant

    A customer moves in midweek (say Thursday) with his liability starting on the day he moves in. He pays his rent weekly and makes his claim in the same week that he moves in. Does his benefit start on the Thursday or the Monday before and which Reg explains this?

    Thanks

    #11187
    Kevin D
    Participant

    Benefit starts from the first week, courtesy of [b:226a8689cf]HBR 76(2)[/b:226a8689cf].

    In broad terms, [b:226a8689cf]HBR 80[/b:226a8689cf] provides that entitlement is apportioned for the number of days in that week.

    Therefore, the practical effect of the regs is that benefit will start from Thursday, based on the facts in your case.

    Regards

    #11188
    Mark
    Participant

    The law says that he should be awarded HB for the whole of the week in which he moves in (i.e. the claim starts on the Monday of the week in which he moved in). [HB Reg 76(2)]

    But the law also says that his eligible rent (and every other part of calculating his entitlement) is based during that week on the number of days for which he is liable. [HB Reg 80(4)(a) and HB Reg 80(5)]

    In other words, for the first week of his claim he will only receive x/7ths of a full weeks entitlement (where x is the number of days in the first week for which he is liable).

    Computers generally get a bit confused by this – so in computer speak his claim starts on the day he moved in (i.e the mid-week date). A computer that does this is technically wrong – but nonetheless the amount that it would award in this first week would still be correct.

    The only way that a computer acting in this way could cause a problem is if certain transitional protections get wrongly lost because of a perceived gap between an old and new claim that does not in fact exist. This is, thankfully, exceedingly unlikely and I am yet to put together a plausible scenario where it could happen.

    There are, of course, equivalent provisions in the HB (pensioner) regs too.

    #11189
    graeme
    Participant

    This is the answer I thought but looking at HBR 80 it’s not so clear.

    The whole of HBR 80(4) refers back to 80(2b) which is about monthly rents.

    HBR 80(3a) concerns rent payable in intervals of a week and makes no reference to apportioning the rent by the number of days. In fact it says that the eligible rent “shall be calculated by reference to the amount of eligible rent payable in respect of a week, whether or not his liability to make those payments relates to the whole of that benefit week”

    I’ve just had another idea that could bring me to the right answer. The benefit for the first week should be based on eligible rent for the whole week, HBR 80(3a), but if someone’s rent is £70.00pw and they move in on Thursday there rent payable for the first week is £40.00, so their maximum eligible rent for this week would be £40.00 (if not restricted by RO). Therefore starting the claim on Thursday would have the effect of calculating entitlement for that first week based on an eligible rent of £40.00. Am I right?

    If I am right I still have a problem. As we are an LHA area our eligible rents aren’t based upon the rent payable so again we’re back to apportioning which HBR 80(3a) seems to prohibit.

    Any further thoughts would be much appreciated.

    #11190
    Kevin D
    Participant

    I think I see the problem Graeme. The version of regs you are relying on shows HBR (80)(3). But, [b:23645bc8ac]para 3[/b:23645bc8ac] was deleted from April 2006 (per SI 2005/2502).

    As para 3 is no longer in existence, [b:23645bc8ac]HBR 80(4)(a)[/b:23645bc8ac] applies and the rent is apportioned accordingly.

    Regards

    #11191
    graeme
    Participant

    Thanks Kevin

    I was looking on opsi.gov.uk. which hasn’t been updated. Is there an up to date version online?

    #11192
    Mark
    Participant

    Graeme – the easist to follow and most up-to-date version of the regs you need is here:

    http://www.dwp.gov.uk/advisers/docs/lawvols/bluevol/pdf/a8_2501.pdf

    The regs on this site (i.e HBinfo) are up-to-date too but I don’t like the layout.

    #11193
    graeme
    Participant

    Thanks Mark

    #11194
    Anonymous
    Guest

    This whole thread seems to be suggesting that HB is paid only from date of move in all cases (and therefore apportioned accordingly). But I thought this was only where it was a change of circs- change of address within LA- and thats dealt with by HBR80 (4) (b) not ( a) ? My reading of HBR 80 (4) (a) is this is where its a fresh claim, and because its not a change of circs, so long as claim and move in are within first week (as in HBR 76 (2) ), then HB is payable from liability, not move date.
    I know there was a thread some months ago where Peter Barker argued that liability is a separate concept from occupation, and that therefore the new claimant can be liable even though not yet moved in- does this not still hold water? or did I misunderstand? (It has been known! 🙂

    #11195
    Kevin D
    Participant

    Glenys:

    I agree that [b:c28a1d0c03]HBR 80(4)(a)[/b:c28a1d0c03] must be for a new claim. With regard to apportionment, the provision contains the phrase “[b:c28a1d0c03]….in respect of a dwelling which he occupies as his home…[/b:c28a1d0c03]”.

    That indicates that apportionment is only for the days on which there is liability [b:c28a1d0c03]AND[/b:c28a1d0c03] occupancy.

    Peter B is right about occupancy and liability being separate. But, [b:c28a1d0c03]HBR 80(4)(a)[/b:c28a1d0c03] binds the two for the purpose of that regulation. So, although a clmt can be liable prior to moving in, HB will only be payable in those circumstances if:

    1) 2 homes (dual liability): HBR 7(6)(e) is satisfied; or
    2) 1 home (single liability): HBR 7(8 ) is satisfied

    NB: If neither 1) or 2) applies to a new claim, current case law means HB will only be payable from the Monday after occupancy (not liability) if a clmt occupies the property on a day in a benefit week after liability commenced.

    Hope the above helps.

    #11196
    Anonymous
    Guest

    thanks- yes it does, and now I’m wondering why i thought otherwise. I think maybeit depends where you take a breath in the sentence! I know a lot of LA’s are only applying the “HB from move in” to change of address claims, so obviously there’s still some difference of opinion!

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