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Important Information Relating to Severe Weather

Please could all Benefit claimants and Landlords note that whilst the Cheque payments for Housing Benefit have been collected from the Benefit Office by Royal Mail, due to the adverse weather disruptions this is continuing to affect Royal Mail postal deliveries service. As a result there may be a delay in Housing Benefit Cheque payments reaching their delivery destination by Monday 11 January 2010.

This disruption only affects those people who receive postal cheque payments. For those people who are paid by BACS, the payments will be in their bank account on Monday 11 January 2010 as normal.

People may want to consider switching to BACS payments in the future, this will mean that you will receive your payments direct into your bank account and the funds are cleared immediately. No more waiting for cheques to arrive or to be cleared. Unfortunately Share Saver Accounts cannot be used for this method pf payment.

Christmas Housing Benefit Payment Arrangements

The Christmas Housing Benefit payment arrangements are being scheduled as follows:

The scheduled Landlord cheque four weekly in arrears payments due to be dispatched 10 December & 7 January. These dates have not been changed. The scheduled Landlord Bacs four weekly in arrears payments due to be cleared in your bank accounts 14 December and 11 January. There is no change to these dates.

The claimant scheduled cheque two weekly in arrears payments have had to be adjusted slightly Payments due to cover the period up to 27 December will now be dispatched on 22 December instead of the 24 December by second class post.

The claimant scheduled Bacs two weekly in arrears payments due to be cleared in bank accounts on 28 December will instead be in bank accounts on 29 December (due to the Bank Holiday).

The scheduled Cheques and Bacs payments due to be received on 11 January will be as normal.

The scheduled two weekly in advance payments have had to be adjusted slightly Cheque payments due to cover the period up to 17 January will now be dispatched 24 December instead of 30 December. The Bacs two weekly in advance payments will remain as being paid into bank accounts on 4 January as normal.

All postal cheque payments will be sent by second class post as per normal.

The Council Offices will close at 3pm on Thursday 24 December and will be open again 8.30 am on 4 January. Please refer to the Councils website or the press for further information.