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What to do if your housing benefit stops

Contact the council right away if your housing benefit stops.

They should tell you the reason your benefit has stopped and how to get it started again.

The council should also write and tell you why your payments stopped.

Your payments could stop for reasons like:

  • you told the council about a change in your situation and they need more information. For example, someone moved in with you and the council needs to know their age

  • the council thinks you have been overpaid

Getting your payments started again

If your payments are suspended it means they stop for the time being.

Give the council the information they want as quickly as you can.

If you give them the information within 1 month and you should still get housing benefit, your payments should:

  • start again within 2 weeks

  • be backdated to the date they stopped

The council should write to say how much housing benefit you will get. The letter must tell you how to challenge the council's decision if you do not agree with it.

When the council can end your claim

The council can close your housing benefit claim if you do not give them the information they ask for within 1 month.

Tell the council if you cannot get the evidence they want. They might suggest other documents.

For example, if you do not have a tenancy agreement, you can still show that you pay your rent.

The council can also stop your housing benefit if you should not get it any more. For example, if you get a job that pays more.

The council must write to you if they decide to close your claim.

You can appeal to a housing benefit tribunal if you want to challenge the decision.

Your housing benefit usually stops if you claim universal credit.

Most working age people cannot make a new claim for housing benefit.

Complain about stopped payments

Use the council’s formal complaints process if you are not happy with how the council has dealt with your housing benefit claim.

Find your:

You can complain to the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman if you’re not happy with the council's response.

Still need advice?

Last updated: 12 April 2024

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