The service has set a vision for delivering an efficient and effective benefit service by:
  • Maximising benefit take up by making residents aware of the application process
  • Improving customer access to the service
  • Giving accurate advice and information about benefit
  • Providing customers with easy to understand literature and information
  • Processing claims promptly and accurately
  • Contacting claimants promptly if we need further information in relation to the application
  • Ensuring benefit entitlement is assessed and paid in accordance with the requirements of the legislation
  • Minimising the level of overpayments and taking prompt and effective action for recovery when they occur
  • Providing systems to prevent and detect benefit fraud and prosecute fraudsters in appropriate cases
  • From 7 April 2008 Local Housing Allowance was introduced, any new claims received which are due to start on or after this date will be assessed under the new rules for Private Tenants. For more information see the section of Local Housing Allowance.
HOUSING BENEFIT is designed to help you pay your rent if you are on a low income. The amount of benefit due to you is worked out by looking at how much money you have coming in, your personal circumstances and how much rent you have to pay, and the amount of savings you have.

Council Tax Benefit helps people on low-income pay their Council Tax. If awarded, Council Tax Benefit is deducted from your Council Tax liability, reducing your bill. To claim Council Tax Benefit you must be the person liable to pay the Council Tax bill for a property.

Second Adult Rebate is a different kind of Council Tax Benefit. It can be claimed by anyone who does not have a partner, but only if they do not qualify for Single Person Discount because they share their home with another person, who is 18 or older, is on a low income and does not pay them rent.
Second Adult Rebate will depend on the financial circumstances of the other adults living with you; your own income will not be used.
The maximum you can receive is 25% of your Council Tax liability.

If you have more than £16,000 in savings we cannot usually pay you any Housing or Council Tax Benefit. Different rules may apply if you are in receipt of Pension Credits Guaranteed Credit, please ask for information.

The benefit regulations are set by Central Government and the Council must administer the scheme within the legislation.

For information on other benefits see the Department for Work and Pensions website.

Jobcentre Plus mange working age benefits such as:
  • Jobseekers Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Incapacity Benefit

The Pension Service manages old age benefits such as:
  • State Pension
  • Pension Credit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit

For independent advice about welfare benefits see the Community Legal Advice, website

Page last updated on: 27/01/2010