There are three ways to claim Housing Benefit:
- together with a claim for Pension Credits
- together with a claim for Income Support, Jobseeker's Allowance (income based) or Employment and Support Allowance (income related)
- direct to your local Council by completing one of our claim forms or applying online
When you make a claim for Pension Credit, if you do not already get Housing Benefit, you will be asked whether you want to make a claim for Housing Benefit on your Pension Credit claim form. If you claim by phone, the adviser will ask you if you want to claim Housing Benefit. The Pension Service will send you a form that you need to fill in and send back to the Council.
If you apply for Income Support, Jobseeker's Allowance or Employment and Support Allowance a claim form for Housing Benefit will be enclosed with the claim pack. If you make a telephone claim, you will be asked if you want to claim Housing Benefit, your Housing Benefit claim form will be forwarded to the Council.
You can complete your Housing Benefit claim online - 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
In other circumstance, you must claim Housing Benefit directly from the Council by filling in a claim form. Once you have filled in the claim form send it back to the Council as soon as possible.
You can contact the Benefits and Revenues Customer Services Section for a claim form to be sent to you or if you prefer we can complete the claim form with you over the telephone or in person at our office in Ripley. Benefits Advisors are available at our Town Centre Offices in Alfreton, Belper and Heanor to help you complete the application form.
You can download the Housing Benefit claim form here or collect one from one of our Town Centre Offices.
Where a claim is made direct to the Council entitlement generally begins on the Monday following your verbal or written request to claim Housing Benefit, as long as we receive a completed claim form from you within a calendar month of your request.
However a claim may be backdated where a claimant can show 'good cause' as to why the claim was not made earlier. For working aged claimants a claim may be backdated for a maximum of up to 1 month from the date of the backdating request. For pension aged claimants we are able to consider the claim for a maximum of 3 months before the date of claim.
A person may claim Housing Benefit up to 17 weeks in advance of the date they reach pension age, or up to 13 weeks in advance of some other event which will mean they will become entitled to Housing Benefit, for example moving to a new address. However we will not be able to pay you any Housing Benefit until you move in.
Further Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support forms can be found here and are available to download individually.