Working Age residents (i.e. you are below pension age)
From 24 October 2018 if you are receiving Housing Benefit and have any of the following changes you may need to claim Universal Credit instead of Housing Benefit:
- Starting or stopping work
- Job Seekers Allowance ending due to sickness
- Employment and Support Allowance ending due to being found fit to work
- Employment and Support Allowance ending due to working or exceeding permitted work
- reduction in working hours due to sickness
- Income Support ending because your child has turned five
- separating from your partner
- becoming responsible for a child for the first time.
See Claiming Universal Credit for information on how to claim.
If you are currently receiving Housing Benefit and do not have any of the above changes then at some point you will be asked to claim Universal Credit instead. We do not yet know when that will be, but it should be by 2023 at the latest. You will get at least 3 months notice of this change.
To begin preparing yourself for Universal Credit please visit www.understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk
If you have been placed in temporary homeless accommodation by the council's Housing Department or live in Supported Accommodation where the landlord is a housing association, charity or voluntary organisation and care is provided to you, you will remain claiming Housing Benefit even if you have one of the above changes.
Pensioners (i.e. you have reached pension age)
You will remain claiming Housing Benefit with the council even if you have one of the above changes. You cannot claim Universal Credit because it is for Working Age residents only.
Eventually it might be that you receive help with your rent through the DWP's Pension Service, but we have no details about this and it would not start before 2024 at the earliest.