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No housing benefit for 9 months .. due to UC v Legacy ESA (IR)

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  • No housing benefit for 9 months .. due to UC v Legacy ESA (IR)

    Hi, Im glad I found this wonderful site. Im in a bit of bad situation with regard to housing benefit. I have to say that I have always worked in public service and fell ill a few years ago. Since then I have been on ESA (IR) with a couple entitlement to Severe Disability Premium (SDP). I moved from an area were UC was not rolled out to a "full service area". I moved to a new house in the countryside were there was NO Internet and phone and 4G was patchy at best. At the time I moved I was told that my legacy ESA (IR) would end. I would need to claim UC. I found out that there is no SDP and little disability premium in UC.

    As I had moved - I could no longer get Housing Benefit (HB), so I had to use SDP ESA to pay rent £460.00 a month !.

    This was March 2018, I could not get online or access a Jobcentre and the DWP offered no help claiming UC till June 2018. By this time I became aware of managed migration. This meant that if you were getting SDP rules would be brought out through Parliament so if you get SDP you would be unable to claim UC (Even if you wanted too). I did not claim UC as I thought the rules would be amended quicker than they were.

    On 16.1.2019 the rules were changed and anyone getting SDP could NOT claim UC and therefore could get housing benefit - so I can now claim my rent money.

    I have at this time since moving last year paid out £4000 in rent out of my own benefits last year.

    What I wanted to know is there anyone in a similar situation who has managed to challenge the DWP of local authority ? and claim or get their monies back.

    Back in 2018 the DWP attitude was simple - stay as you are with SDP and remain on ESA (IR) OR claim UC and get you HB (housing element) and say goodbye to your joint SDP payment !! would have made us far worse off. No no win situation and DWP were quite nasty as I seemed to challenge them.

    I have an ongoing complaint with the DWP about the period march to June were I could not make an online claim. But that is with the ICE at present.

    I cannot fathom how they can refuse you housing benefit for so long .. and I know from other forums that Im not alone. Heard of people becoming suicidal du to this scenario - that's how bad this ruling party are … enough said

    Thank you for any input ….

    Tags: None

  • #2
    Hi Apollo.

    Certain changes in circumstances mean that a person has to claim Universal Credit.
    1. New claim for benefits in another Local Authority
    2. New claim for benefits in the same Local Authority after a claim has gone out of entitlement
    3. Change in Household
    4. Change in income meaning that a new DWP legacy benefit is claimed.

    You say in your post that you moved from a Non UC Area to a Full service UC Area. Because of the move you were required to claim your housing costs in Universal Credit - there are no exceptions to this ruling and at the time, it would not have mattered if you had SDP in your award or not.

    You would have been making a New Claim in a New Local Authority and would fall under the Universal Credit rules that pertain to that local authority.

    As a Benefits assessor, were you to come into my office to make a claim for Housing Benefit with SDP in your benefits, your first day of entitlement to Housing Benefit in my area (Full Service UC) would be 16/01/19 and backdating would not be allowed due to the fact that prior to this date you would have been required to claim UC. On this point my hands would be tied because once Full Service has rolled out in a local authority, the local authority is not allowed to accept new claims for housing benefit.

    The only exceptions to this rule are new claims for Pensioners or Supported Accommodation claims and only from 16/01/19 claimants who have the Severe Disability Premium within their legacy benefits in the previous month.

    The fact that managed migration was being rolled out in June 2018 would not have helped you either because managed migration applies to claims for Housing Benefit that are already in payment, where the legacy benefit ends or the DWP migrate the claimant onto Universal credit. In these instances the claimants would have been entitled to a 2 week run on of housing benefit while their benefits transitioned to UC. People whose claims had gone out of payment or who moved from one LA to another would not benefit from this managed migration but would have had to make a new claim for UC.

    Although you say you moved to the country, you also mention that you had a couples claim. By moving to the country, I assume you must have had some form of transport available and also a partner who could have transported you to the town/city nearby. You could have made your claim for Universal Credit at any local library or Jobcenter.

    I have not heard of anyone successfully challenging the ruling that a claimant must claim UC for their housing costs when moving to a Full Service Area, so I wish you well in your efforts to do so. The only way you would get this changed would be by taking the DWP to an Upper Tier Tribunal


    • #3
      How does one take this to a upper tier tribunal ? I did complain but this system is so hostile now.

      i moved due to hate crime ... so UC etc wasnt on my radar so much. I was too ill to go to JC I live in a rural location but we had no transport .... nor offered any help at the time.

      this cannot be right the fact that in June the rules were changed for SDP HB NOT to be put on UC seems to support my point.

      hope this govt gone soon..... Thank you


      • #4
        Hi Apollo

        Something occurred to me after I went to bed last night. I should have explained more about Severe Disability Premiums

        When you have ESA and are unable to work, whether in the Support or the Work related group, you are able to get the following premiums as a couple on top of your standard ESA but the criteria for qualifying is strict

        Disability Premium : £ 47.80
        Enhanced Disability: £ 23.55 *
        Severe Disability : £128.60 **

        For the Enhanced and Severe disability premiums, you must be eligible for the ordinary disability premium in order to qualify for them

        To get the Disability Premium, you must be
        - under pension credit age
        - in receipt of DLA or PIP or as a working age couple have disabled working tax credits in pay.
        - or have been unable to work for a year due to your disability

        To get the Enhanced Disability Premium, you must
        - qualify for the Disability Premium
        - have PIP Daily Living Enhanced or DLA Care High

        To get the Severe Disability Premium, you must
        - receive the Disability premium and
        - PIP daily living or DLA Care Middle or High
        - be living alone

        You can get Severe Disability Premium if you have a partner who is
        - blind
        - also receives a qualifying benefit (PIP/DLA)

        You can get Severe Disability Premium if you have
        - a border or a sub-tenant who is not related to you
        - a joint tenant who has their own tenancy agreement and rent liability.

        You cannot receive the Severe Disability Premium if someone else receives Carer's Allowance for looking after you


        • #5
          How to take the DWP to Tribunal.

          There is only one way.

          You receive an adverse decision: For example ESA ends
          From here you have to go through the process of

          1. Requesting a Mandatory Reconsideration (You are asking the DWP to revise their decision)
          2. Mandatory decision has been refused (you then have Appeal Rights)

          Only once you receive the right to appeal can you challenge the DWP in an Upper Tier Tribunal.

          You also have very strict time limits to do so. Normally one month from the decision date (issue of the letter)


          • #6
            Thank you for so much help ....


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