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Housing and Council Tax Benefit Landlord Forum 8 th February 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "Housing and Council Tax Benefit Landlord Forum 8 th February 2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 Housing and Council Tax Benefit Landlord Forum 8 th February 2012

2 Benefit Service Update Shared Service with Cannock Chase Council Shared Service with Cannock Chase Council Commitment to improving the service already provided Commitment to improving the service already provided Performance targets to be published Performance targets to be published

3 Shared Services Objectives Maintain or improve Performance Maintain or improve Performance Increase Resilience Increase Resilience Increase responsiveness to change Increase responsiveness to change Make better use of technology Make better use of technology Save money (£400k p.a) Save money (£400k p.a)

4 Benefit Performance Performance already reduced from an average of 19 days to 13 days on new claims Performance already reduced from an average of 19 days to 13 days on new claims ……and from 12 days to 5 days on processing changes in circumstances ……and from 12 days to 5 days on processing changes in circumstances

5 Benefit processes New Claims made via an appointment system New Claims made via an appointment system Changes in circumstances dealt with at first point of contact Changes in circumstances dealt with at first point of contact Appeals dealt with inside of 28 days Appeals dealt with inside of 28 days

6 Shared Service Principles Location of the benefit service not yet finally decided but …. Location of the benefit service not yet finally decided but …. Commitment to providing Customer Services at both Cannock and Stafford Commitment to providing Customer Services at both Cannock and Stafford Commitment to “putting the needs of the customer first” in all decisions Commitment to “putting the needs of the customer first” in all decisions

7 ANY QUESTIONS?

8 Welfare Reform Act 2011 Removal of the “excess” paid to some tenants Removal of the “excess” paid to some tenants LHA calculated based upon 30 th percentile instead of the mid range LHA calculated based upon 30 th percentile instead of the mid range Caps maximum LHA at 4 bed property rate Caps maximum LHA at 4 bed property rate

9 From 1 st January a further change is being introduced From 1 st January a further change is being introduced Single tenants under the age of 35 will only be entitled to the shared room rate. Single tenants under the age of 35 will only be entitled to the shared room rate. This provision previously only affected single customers aged under 25 This provision previously only affected single customers aged under 25

10 Currently single tenants aged between 25 and 34 are entitled to the one room rate Currently single tenants aged between 25 and 34 are entitled to the one room rate The reduction in benefit is effective 9 months after the anniversary date of the tenants claim where the claim was made prior to April 11. If the claim is made after April 11, the new rates start on the anniversary date of the claim. The reduction in benefit is effective 9 months after the anniversary date of the tenants claim where the claim was made prior to April 11. If the claim is made after April 11, the new rates start on the anniversary date of the claim.

11 Exemptions !!! Any tenant who is an ex offender will not be subject to the shared room rate and…. Any tenant who is an ex offender will not be subject to the shared room rate and…. Any tenant who has or who is at risk of sleeping rough will not be subject to the shared room rate Any tenant who has or who is at risk of sleeping rough will not be subject to the shared room rate

12 Don’t rely on the tenant to tell us Don’t rely on the tenant to tell us If you have a single tenant aged under 35 and think that the exemptions may apply – call the benefit helpline number If you have a single tenant aged under 35 and think that the exemptions may apply – call the benefit helpline number

13 Other Changes From April 12- Local Housing Allowance rates will be frozen and not uprated each month. From April 12- Local Housing Allowance rates will be frozen and not uprated each month. From April 13- the Government plans to introduce the “benefits cap” From April 13- the Government plans to introduce the “benefits cap” From April 13- Universal Credit is planned to start for “some” new Housing Benefit claims From April 13- Universal Credit is planned to start for “some” new Housing Benefit claims

14 From April 13- Local Housing Allowance rates will be uprated by the Consumer Price Index. From April 13- Local Housing Allowance rates will be uprated by the Consumer Price Index. From April 13-The Government plans to introduce “under occupancy of social housing legislation” From April 13-The Government plans to introduce “under occupancy of social housing legislation” From April 13- the Government also plans to introduce “localisation of Council Tax Benefit” From April 13- the Government also plans to introduce “localisation of Council Tax Benefit”

15 ANY QUESTIONS?


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