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Discretionary housing payments

Payments

How much DHP can be paid and for how long? 

A DHP award can be made for any period, the Council will generally make an award for 3 or 6 months or up to the end of the financial year as appropriate, there are exceptional circumstances where the award may be for longer, most of these have been defined by caselaw.

The level of the housing benefit plus the DHP must not exceed the weekly eligible rent, though this is not the case for those in receipt of Universal Credit.

If at the time of the initial award it is felt the current accommodation is inappropriate, the customer will be advised to look for alternative ways of alleviating the hardship, for example, moving to cheaper accommodation and will be given reasonable time to do this but a DHP is not generally paid long term.

How will a DHP be paid?

The council will issue a payment in respect of the award of the DHP to either the customer, or his/her landlord/agent.

If the application for DHP is unsuccessful, a letter is issued to the customer explaining the decision and advising them that they can request a review of the decision within one calendar month.

Overpayments

Customers have a duty to notify the council of any changes in their circumstances, which may affect their entitlement to a DHP. These will normally be the changes that affect their entitlement to housing benefit or Universal Credit at the address for which the DHP is claimed. We will seek to recover any overpayments.