Benefit Cap – lifted for 9 months?

by Readers Question

10:50 AM, 26th June 2020
About 2 weeks ago

Benefit Cap – lifted for 9 months?

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Benefit Cap – lifted for 9 months?

Is this correct? I just spoke to the DWP and apparently even if a tenant has been capped, the cap has been removed for the next 9 months.

I’m guessing this is a result of some landlords upping their rent to meet the increased LHA rates? I’ve been checking to see if my tenants are on benefit caps before I do (so that any rent increase does not come out of their other benefits meant for food, heating etc instead of their housing element), only to discover 10 mins ago it doesn’t apply now as all caps are suspended as of last week?

Can someone confirm this?

Reluctant



Comments

Prakash Tanna

11:52 AM, 26th June 2020
About 2 weeks ago

Hi,
I'm not aware of that being the case. Many have lobbied for the Benefit Cap to be temporarily suspended but it has not happened and looks unlikely to for now, imo.

Either the person you spoke to at DWP had intel that is not public knowledge as of yet (unlikely), got it wrong (very very likely) or was referring to a particular claimant of yours who meets one of the exemption criteria.

Mick Roberts

15:10 PM, 26th June 2020
About 2 weeks ago

I'm not aware either. And if DWP told u on the phone, I most certainly wun't believe it. They get everything wrong u could imagine.
Ha ha Prakash says it very very likely.

Or the inexperienced DWP staff may have been referring to DWP now paying 30th percentile more Housing Element rent from 1 April 2020 & got it all mixed up.
DWP has rang my tenants many a time & got loads wrong.

David Rundle

15:16 PM, 26th June 2020
About 2 weeks ago

The cap is applied 9 months after becoming jobless is my understanding- where is Bill Irvine?

Bill irvine

18:01 PM, 26th June 2020
About 2 weeks ago

Hi

Nothing has changed as far as the Benefits Cap is concerned. However, as David mentions, there is a 9 months ‘grace period’ applied to new claimants, who were working in the 12 months, prior to claiming, and during that time we’re earning £604 pcm or more. If they meet the criteria, the BC doesn’t apply for 9 consecutive Benefit Assessment Periods (BAP).

I suspect that’s what the DWP staff member is referring to.

Bill

Mick Roberts

10:37 AM, 27th June 2020
About 2 weeks ago

Aah very interesting. I'd forgot that exemption rule.
I've just had girl pack up work, gone to college, at same time had her 4th baby.
I said Are u sure u not getting benefit cap. She said No, college hours exempts it. I don't fully understand college minimum hours etc., can just remember roughly if did more than 15.5 hours, classed as full time course, wasn't allowed HB. Something like that.
So this girl could in fact not be exempt from the cap from college, but actually exempt cause just stopped work. So we could both be in for a shock after 9 months.
And she gets the Housing Element paid direct & already don't want to pay the full Housing Element she's allowed.

Anda55

12:21 PM, 28th June 2020
About 2 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Bill irvine at 26/06/2020 - 18:01My son applied for UC, but this 9-month exemption did not apply to him because the date when he stopped his job was March 17.
And on March 1-17 he made less than £ 604.
So they considered in the 12 months when they should have at least £ 604 / month and the period March 1-17 as a whole month, which I do not think is correct.
Because in March 2020 it is only the gain for 17 days, so it is normal to be smaller.
I think they had to count how much they would have earned if they had worked entirely in March 2020. And then the condition that the income be at least £ 604 was met.
What do you think? Thank you.


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