Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 02-May-2022
Summary: We will not investigate this complaint about housing benefit and council tax reduction matters. Mrs X has used her right to appeal against the main decisions so we cannot consider them. We cannot consider complaints about the management of social housing. It would be disproportionate to investigate points that are peripheral to those main points.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 26-Apr-2022
Summary: We will not investigate Mr X's complaint the Council delayed paying housing benefit to which he was entitled. We are satisfied the Council has paid the benefit and it has agreed to pay Mr X £100 to remedy any injustice caused by the delay.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 18-Apr-2022
Summary: Mr B complained on behalf of Mr C that the Council had refused to forward his housing benefit appeal to the Tribunal service. We found the Council at fault, but we do not consider this caused Mr C an injustice.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 10-Apr-2022
Summary: We will not investigate this complaint about recovery of a housing benefit overpayment. This is because the Council has provided a satisfactory response.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 23-Mar-2022
Summary: Mr B complained about the way the Council dealt with his claims for housing benefit and council tax reduction. We found the Council delayed for a year in revising Mr B's claims once he had provided the necessary information. While the delay (due to the cyber-attack in October 2020) was largely outside the Council's control, it was service failure which caused Mr B financial hardship and distress. The Council has agreed to pay Mr B £200.
Statement Not upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 15-Mar-2022
Summary: Mrs C complains about how the Council handled her housing benefit. She says she did not receive letters about changes to her housing benefit award which led to her being in arrears, and some of her housing benefit was allocated towards a property she had already vacated. We have discontinued this investigation as the Council has already resolved the matter the Ombudsman is able to investigate.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 03-Mar-2022
Summary: We will not investigate this complaint about benefit overpayments. The Council has now offered a reasonable remedy and Ms X had a right of appeal to a tribunal.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 21-Feb-2022
Summary: Miss X complained the Council failed to properly consider her application for Discretionary Housing Payment, causing her to fall into rent arrears. We found the Council did not properly consider a recent change in Miss X's circumstances when assessing her application and in its later review. The Council agreed to apologise, reconsider Miss X's application, and if it changes its decision, pay Miss X a financial remedy for avoidable uncertainty. The Council also agreed to issue reminders to its staff and review its application form.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 15-Feb-2022
Summary: Mr X complains on behalf of Mr Y that the Council delayed passing his housing benefit appeal to the tribunal after it upheld its earlier decision to recover an overpayment. The Council is at fault. There was delay submitting the appeal to the tribunal. This did not cause Mr Y a significant injustice, but may be causing injustice to others. The Council has agreed to review its procedures.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 18-Jan-2022
Summary: Miss Y complains about the Council's decision to refuse her application for a Discretionary Housing Payment while she was pregnant and caring for a young child. The Ombudsman finds fault by the Council, which caused Miss Y distress and uncertainty. This is because we find the Council failed to consider government guidance on good practice when handling applications, such as Miss Y's, where the applicant is pregnant and has childcare duties that are a barrier to getting work. To remedy this, the Council has agreed to apologise to Miss Y, make her a payment and make a fresh decision on her application. The Council has agreed to make several service improvements.