Housing Benefit

Backdated benefit

We usually pay Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction from the Monday after we get your claim but in some circumstances we can pay from an earlier date.

Backdated benefit is paid for a period prior to the date that an application form is received. For working age claimants you can apply for a backdate for up to 1 month from the date we received the request. However, this is providing you show continuous good cause why you did not claim from an earlier date. 

Examples of good cause

  • you could not have immediately claimed as you were in or just leaving hospital
  • you have been ill and no-one could make a claim on your behalf
  • you received wrong advice from the Benefits Service, Jobcentre Plus, Citizens Advice Bureau or another official body
  • you did not understand that you could claim due to your age, health, inexperience or language difficulties
  • You are unable to manage your affairs but you do not have an appointee

In most circumstances we may ask you to provide evidence. For example if you were ill then we may need to see a letter from your doctor that confirms this.

There may be other reasons why could not claim from an earlier data. It is important you contact us to seek further advice if need be.

How do I request backdated benefit?

All requests need to be made in writing and you must give the reasons why you want your claim to be backdated. You will also need to provide proof of your income for the period you are requesting backdated benefit for. For example if you were working then we will need to see your payslips.

What happens if my claim is successful?

If you are claiming Council Tax Reduction then the backdated award will be credited to your Council Tax Account.

If you are in receipt of Housing Benefit then the backdated money will be sent to the person who already receives the payments.

What happens if my claim is unsuccessful?

We will write to advise you the outcome of your claim. If it is unsuccessful you have the right to appeal.

You must write to us within one calendar month of the date on your decision letter as per the appeals procedure.

If you have reached the qualifying age for state pension credits

If you have reached the qualifying age for state pension credits your claim may cover any period in the 3 months before the day your claim was received.

You do not need to apply for backdating as we will check whether you qualify.

To see when you reach the qualifying age please see here