HOW YOUR HOUSING BENEFIT/COUNCIL TAX SUPPORT IS WORKED OUT 2016/17

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1 HOW YOUR HOUSING BENEFIT/COUNCIL TAX SUPPORT IS WORKED OUT 2016/17 PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS FOR HELP ONLY- IF IN DOUBT MAKE A CLAIM FOR HOUSING BENEFIT/COUNCIL TAX SUPPORT 1. To work out your benefit: On I.S/JSA (IB)/ ESA (IR) or Pension Credit Guarantee You may get full benefit, i.e. all your rent and/or council tax, less non-dependant or other deductions (please see below). ALL OTHER CASES Find out your total income less any disregards (see overleaf part 5). Next, take away from this the total applicable amounts (see overleaf part 6). The answer is your income difference. Use this figure in parts 2-4 below. SECOND ADULT REBATE If someone else lives with you on a low income and you are a single person (or partner is exempt) you may be entitled to up to 25% off your council tax bill. The calculation is not shown here; please ask us for more details. I.S./JSA (IB)/ ESA (IR) means Income support,job Seekers Allowance (income based), Employment Support Allowance Income Related 2. Council Tax Support (a) Find out your weekly charge. This is the yearly council tax less any reductions or discounts divided by 365 and multiplied by 7. (b) Deduct any Non-Dependant Deductions (see table in Part 4) (c) I.S./JSA(IB)/ESA(IR) Cases this amount is your weekly council tax support. (d) Non I.S./JSA(IB)/ ESA (IR) Cases take 20% of the income difference from the weekly tax above. Divide the result by 7 and multiply by 365 to get the yearly council tax support. 3. Rent benefit (a) Find out your weekly rent that the landlord charges you. To convert from a calendar monthly rent, if you are a Private Tenant (i.e. paying rent to a private landlord, Housing Association, for Board or at a B & B) multiply the rent by 12, divide by 52. (b) Take away any non-rent items (ie heating, lighting, water), as we cannot pay for these items. There are standard deductions we can make if there are no specific amounts included in your rent. In Local Housing Allowance cases: no deductions are made for non-rent items. (c) Private tenants: Most new claims are now subject to Local Housing Allowance rules. This means that regardless of the size of your home, your benefit is based on the area for which you live and how many people live with you, as opposed to the actual rent you are charged. The standard figures for Gloucester are published on our website; they are reviewed once a year. (d) Social rented sector tenants (such as housing associations): If you have more bedrooms than benefit rules say you need your housing benefit will be reduced. If you have one bedroom more than you need your eligible rent is reduced by 14%; if you have more than one bedroom more than you need your eligible rent is reduced by 25%. (e) For all tenants, please deduct any Non-Dependant Deductions (see table in Part 4) (f) I.S/JSA(IB)/ESA(IR) Cases - the eligible rent as worked out from (a) to (e) is your weekly housing benefit. (g) Non I.S/JSA(IB)/ESA(IR) cases: subtract 65% of the income difference from the eligible rent obtained from steps (a) to (e) above. This is your weekly housing benefit. 1

2 4. Non-Dependant deductions Non-dependants are other adults who live with you in your part of the property. They may or may not be part of your family. The weekly deduction amounts are shown below. These deductions are an assumed contribution to the rent/council tax. We have to take from your benefit the amounts shown. There is no deduction from rent/council tax if the claimant or partner is registered blind, or gets Attendance Allowance, DLA (care component), or PIP (daily living component). PIP is the Personal Independence Payment. Also, there is no deduction if the Non-dependant is aged under 18 (any income), aged 18 to 24 (inclusive) and gets I.S./JSA(IB/ESA (IR) assessment phase or is a pensioner receiving any type of pension credit. Non-dependant circumstances: Aged under 25 and on IS or JSA(IB) or ESA(IR) which does not include an amount for the support component or work related activity component. Rent (Privately Rented) Nil Council Tax Support Nil Aged 25 or over and on IS/JSA(IB) Nil Age 18 or over and not in remunerative work In receipt of main phase ESA(IR) Nil Aged 18 or over and in remunerative work: Gross weekly income up to Gross weekly income to Gross weekly income to Gross weekly income to Gross weekly income to Gross weekly income and over

3 Claimants on I.S/JSA(IB)ESA(IR)/Pension Credit (Guarantee):- ignore this page, please see parts 1-4 overleaf. 5. Income We take into account: WAGES- This is gross pay (including any overtime, bonuses, etc) less Income Tax, National Insurance and half of any private pension payments. No other deductions are taken into account. STATE BENEFITS- e.g. State Pension, JSA(Contribution Based), Pension Savings Credit, Employment and Support Allowance (Contribution Based), Incapacity Benefit, Working Tax Credit. RENTAL INCOME- Some may be ignored. OTHER INCOMES- e.g., Private Pensions, Annuities. We Ignore: WAGES- if you are working we disregard part of your wages. The weekly disregard is: 5 if you are single; 10 if you are a couple; 20 if you are disabled, have a special occupation or are a carer; 25 if you are a lone parent. An extra is also deducted for: Single person (over 25) or couple with no children if working at least 30 hours per week. Or lone parents, couple with children, disabled people, if working more than 16 hours per week. CERTAIN BENEFITS/INCOME- e.g. Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance, Personal Independence Payment, part of War Disablement Pension, all Maintenance paid for children, 15 from Widowed Parents/Mothers Allowance. CHILD BENEFIT- We disregard Child Benefit in full. CHILD CARE COSTS- Up to 175 per week of earned income may be disregarded if it is paid for registered childcare costs. This is up to 300 if you have 2 or more children. This may apply when you and/or your partner are in remunerative work. It applies to children up to the first Monday in September after their 15 th Birthday. Savings/Capital: Note- we take the total balance of all your savings wherever they are held (not the amount of interest). Capital under ignored, but evidence may still be required of this, if you claim assumed income is 1 per week for each 250 (or part) over If you/ your partner are Pension Credit qualifying age, this is 1 for every 500, over 10,000. Over 16,000- unable to claim, unless you receive Pension Guarantee Credit or have other disregarded Capital. 6. Applicable amounts This is an assumed income the government states that you need to have, to live on. It varies depending on your circumstances. The most common are listed below: Personal allowances: Working age: Pension Credit qualifying age: Single person age up to Single claimant or lone parent age up to 64 Single person age 25 or over Single claimant or lone parent age or over Couple both age under Couple both aged under 65 (but at least one is Pension Credit qualifying age) Couple one or both age 18 or over Couple at least one is 65 or over Lone parent age under Lone parent age 18 or over Dependant children or young persons age 0 19: per child/young person 3

4 Premiums: Family premium Disabled child premium Family premium (lone parent rate) Enhanced disability premium: Disability premium (working age In respect of a disabled child only) (single rate) Disability premium (working age Single rate disabled adult (working age only) (couple rate) only) Carer premium Couple rate disabled adult (working age only) Severe disability premium (single rate) *To find out your applicable amount add up the above figures that apply to you. Severe disability premium (couple rate both qualify) Other changes from 1 April 2016: Backdating rules. For any claims made on or after 1 April 2016 the rules about backdating are, in summary, as follows: Benefit/support type and age of claimant/partner Maximum backdating period Is good cause needed for a claim to be backdated? HB working age 1 month Yes HB pension credit qualifying age 3 months No CTS working age 6 months Yes CTS pension credit qualifying age 3 months No Family premium: Housing Benefit: For some claims the family premium is abolished. This applies to new claims made on or after 1 May 2016, and existing claims where the claimant becomes responsible for a child or young person on or after 1 May 2016 (eg, when a new baby is born). This applies to HB claims for working age and pension age claimants. Council Tax Support: For pension age CTS claims the family premium is abolished as in Housing Benefit; this was a statutory (legal) change. For working age CTS claims the family premium rules are unchanged. PLEASE NOTE: This leaflet should be used for guidance only. Housing benefit/council tax support rules are quite complex. If you need further help or guidance on any aspect of Benefit please contact us at the address below: GLOUCESTER CITY COUNCIL REVENUES & BENEFITS SERVICE Address: Herbert Warehouse, The Docks, Gloucester, GL1 2EQ 4

5 Benefits Advice Line Telephone: (01452) Our Customer Services team are at the above address, and our fully trained staff will be able to help answer any questions you may have. Opening hours (Herbert Warehouse, the Docks): 9.00am to 4:45pm Monday to Friday. To make a claim: Our online claim form is on our website. Original proof of all Income, Savings and Rent must be supplied but don t delay making a claim. Remember, once a claim is made, you must tell us about any changes in your circumstances. Want to report a benefit fraud? You can report this online: or search online for report benefit fraud *For more information and an on line benefit calculator, please follow the links on our website: IF IN DOUBT MAKE A CLAIM 5

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