Recent statements in this category are shown below:
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 15-Mar-2019
Summary: Mr D complains the Council's delay and inconsistent treatment of his expenses in its housing benefit calculation caused him hardship. The Ombudsman considers there is fault by the Council because it delayed submitting an appeal to the Tribunal. However, as the Tribunal has dismissed Mr D's appeal I have not recommended a financial remedy as there is no significant injustice.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 12-Mar-2019
Summary: Ms B complains that the Council has failed to fully compensate the costs she incurred following a housing benefit underpayment. The Ombudsman finds the Council gave Ms B inaccurate information, disregarded her childcare costs from October 2017 resulting in a housing benefit underpayment and delayed in responding to Ms B's complaint. The Council has agreed to remedy the injustice suffered by Ms B.
Statement Not upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 28-Feb-2019
Summary: Ms X complains the Council delayed finalising her housing benefit claim and refused to back-date payments. She also complains about the amount of discretionary housing payments awarded because the total amount paid towards her housing costs does not cover her rent. The Council is not at fault.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 27-Feb-2019
Summary: The Council was not at fault for not dealing with Mr X's requests for reconsideration of its decisions on the housing benefit entitlement for all of his tenants. But the Council did not clearly explain why it was treating one request for a reconsideration and appeal as a lead case to decide the issue affecting all of the tenants. This fault caused avoidable time and trouble to Mr X which the Council has agreed to remedy by apologising to him.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 19-Feb-2019
Summary: Mr X complains about the Council's handling of his housing benefit and council tax support. Mr X says the Council has not paid him housing benefit correctly, that he has paid too much council tax, and that there were delays in the Council's handling of his complaint. Mr X says this has caused him a financial hardship. The Ombudsman finds no evidence of fault in the Council's handling of Mr X's housing benefit, council tax support, and complaint.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 18-Feb-2019
Summary: Mr X complains that the Council has failed to deal with his request for a review of housing benefit overpayment. He says this has caused stress and inconvenience, and has cost him time and trouble. The Ombudsman finds fault with the Council for failing to respond to Mr X's requests for a review, and for failing to deal with his complaint. The Council has apologised to Mr X, reviewed the overpayment, and sent his appeal request to the Tribunal Service. The Ombudsman is satisfied that the Council's actions are a suitable remedy to the injustice caused by the faults.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 31-Jan-2019
Summary: Miss Y complains about the approach used by the Council to recover overpaid Housing Benefit and Discretionary Housing Payments. The Ombudsman finds fault because the Council wrongly pursued Miss Y for the recovery of Discretionary Housing Payments, and then prematurely wrote to her employer to seek a Direct Earnings Attachment for overpaid Housing Benefit. This fault caused distress, which the Council will remedy by offsetting £200 from any outstanding debt owed by Miss Y.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 29-Jan-2019
Summary: the Council delayed referring Mr B's housing benefit appeal to tribunal. That caused Mr B to incur rent arrears and led to him having to go to time and trouble to pursue his complaint. The Council has agreed to refer the case to the tribunal service. An apology and payment to Mr B is satisfactory remedy for the injustice caused.
Statement Not upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 22-Jan-2019
Summary: The Ombudsman exercised discretion not to further investigate Ms P's complaint about the way the Council dealt with 2 housing benefit appeals against decisions to recover overpaid benefit. This is because we cannot provide the remedy she seeks.
Statement Upheld Housing benefit and council tax benefit 14-Jan-2019
Summary: Ms B complains that the Council recouped a significant amount of money from her in error and that the compensation it awarded for the distress and inconvenience she and her family suffered is insufficient. The Ombudsman upholds Ms B's complaint and the Council has agreed to make additional payments in recognition of the injustice Ms B suffered because of its actions.