Housing Benefit

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 3rd November 2015.

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Photo of Drew Hendry Drew Hendry Shadow SNP Westminster Group Leader (Transport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps he is taking to increase the uptake of housing benefits by people who are eligible.

Photo of Justin Tomlinson Justin Tomlinson Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (Department for Work and Pensions) (Disabled People)

We are committed to ensuring people are able to claim the correct benefits to which they are entitled. The availability of benefits is widely known, advice is available in different languages, different formats, and different locations. In addition to local authorities, Jobcentre Plus offices, law centres, Citizens Advice, post offices, doctors’ surgeries, libraries, the internet, community groups, welfare rights groups, advice centres, and various voluntary organisations all offer advice and information. Furthermore, many benefit claim forms will offer advice on other forms of assistance that may be available.

Claimants to DWP benefits are routinely asked during the claim process if they want to claim Housing Benefit. If they do, we take the claim and share the data with the local authority.

In future working age customers who are receiving Universal Credit will receive housing costs as part of an individual or a couple’s claim, thus removing the need to make a separate application to the local authority.

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