We will only be able to accept a new claim for Housing Benefit if you:

  • are of pensionable age (if you are a couple, both of you must be of pensionable age) 

  • are entitled to the Severe Disability Premium within your JSA (IB), ESA (IR), Income Support or Housing Benefit *
  • live in exempt accommodation (that is from a charity or housing association and receive care or support as part of your rent)

  • have been placed on temporary housing by the council.

If you don’t fall into one of these groups you will need to make a claim for Universal Credit for help with your housing costs (rent payments).

If you do fall into one of these categories, please read the information below.

* If you're unsure whether you receive a Severe Disability Premium within any benefit you receive, please speak to us or your DWP office for advice.

How do I apply?

You should make your Housing Benefit and or/Council Tax support claim directly to us, using the form below.

Apply for Housing Benefit/Council Tax Support

The form includes guidance on how to complete your claim and a list of the documents you need to give us to support your claim. These include proof of your and any partner’s:

  • National Insurance number

  • identity

  • residency at the address you are claiming for

  • income (wage slips, self-employed earnings, tax credit award letter etc)

  • savings and investments (bank statements, building society passbooks, share certificates, etc)

You should make a claim as soon as possible. If you delay claiming you may lose benefit. We normally work out benefit from the Monday after the date you first contact us. You must provide the documents we ask for within one month of the date you make your claim, or you may lose your benefit entitlement.

We use electronic scanners to check and verify identity documents from all customers applying to access council services. We will scan documents with a product called Trust ID

To support your claim you can download and print out any of the following forms.

Need help with your claim?

If you need help making your claim online, please call us on 01480 388308 and our advisers will help you with any questions you may have. You can also make a claim online at any of our customer service centres where help is also available.

If you are housebound, we may be able to visit you at home and collect the information we need. Please call us on 01480 388308 to discuss what we can do to help.

Can you backdate my claim?

If you are of working age, we can backdate your claim up to one month as long as you can give very good reasons for not making a claim earlier.

If you are of state pension credit age, we can backdate your claim up to three calendar months, depending on your circumstances.

See Backdating Your Housing Benefit and Backdating Your Council Tax Support for more information.

Other benefits

We deal with Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support. All other benefit enquiries are dealt with by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).