12:50 PM, 31st May 2019, About 3 years ago 3
Caridon Landlord Solutions (CLS) was contacted by a landlord whose tenant was in more than 10 months of rent arrears. The landlord had served the tenant with a Section 8 notice as a precaution but did not necessarily want to evict her if the Housing Benefit claim was reinstated.
The landlord provided CLS with the tenant’s contact details for one of our experienced advisors to contact her and establish the tenant’s version of events.
The tenant informed our advisor that she went to Liverpool Housing Benefit Customer Service Centre in June 2018 seeking advice on moving, this contact caused the tenant’s Housing Benefit Claim to be cancelled.
The tenant’s case was quite complex as she was a victim of domestic violence and was still being stalked by her ex-partner. At the time of the first benefit cancellation letter being written to her, her house was broken into and some of her post was stolen.
Liverpool Housing Benefit department had written to the claimant advising her that her claim was cancelled as she had moved out.
When our CLS advisor contacted Liverpool Housing Benefit department, they advised that since the claimants’ circumstances had a changed, her claim was cancelled. They said she would need to make a claim for Universal Credit. CLS advised Liverpool Housing Benefit department that they had wrongfully closed the tenant’s claim after she attended their offices for advice. They suggested that the tenant should complete an “Appeal Against Housing Benefit Decision” form.
We assisted the tenant with writing the appeal providing all relevant information and supporting documents, including the Section 8 eviction notice, in order for the decision to be overturned.
The tenant submitted the paperwork to Liverpool Housing Benefit and our adviser continued to chase Liverpool Housing Benefit for an update.
Three weeks later we received confirmation from Liverpool Housing Benefit that the claim had been reinstated and that a backdated payment would be going out to the tenant.
Had the claim not had been reinstated the tenant would have had to make a claim for Universal Credit in order to claim Housing Cost and the landlord would have lost 10 months of rent. In addition, the tenant would have lost her home as the landlord would have continued with the eviction proceedings when the Section 8 expired.
We took on the case, on a “No win, No fee” basis, drafted a letter of appeal for the landlord, citing the facts, HB regulations, DWP guidance and caselaw. Having considered our detailed submission, the council agreed to revise their earlier decision in our client’s favour, effectively exonerating our client from any culpability.
If you’re currently experiencing an issue of this type or any other problems associated with LHA or Universal Credit please get in touch, as Caridon Landlord Solutions has been set up specifically to offer landlords/agents help in this regard.
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