Guide for people repaying overpayments of Housing Benefit by instalments
This guide may help if your circumstances change and you want to review the amount of your instalment repayment.
Are you having difficulty repaying, now that your circumstances have changed?
If so, this guide will help explain what you need to do, to ask the Council to review the amount of your instalment repayment.
How have my instalments been set?
You may have made a repayment agreement, at the time you were notified of the overpayment.
However, if the repayments are being deducted from your outgoing entitlement to benefit, the levels are set by Central Government. These levels vary depending on whether you are on benefits or if you are working.
How do I ask for a review?
You need to complete a Personal Budget form - please email firstname.lastname@example.org to get a form. On the reverse of the form you must explain what your change of circumstances are.
How do I complete the Personal Budget form?
You must include all income that you receive and that of your partner.
This includes any earnings, benefits, interest payments or any money you receive from people who live with you - such as a family member or a lodger.
You must then detail all of your regular expenses on the form as well.
Make sure that you convert all of your income and expenses into weekly or monthly amounts, so that they are all for the same time scale and they can be added up into a weekly or monthly total.
If any of your expenses are not permanent, you must state the date that they are due to end - things such as fines, loans or catalogue payments.
We will require 2 months bank statements for all accounts held for yourself and your partner.
You need to state the amount that you are able to pay at the bottom of the sheet, sign the form and return to:
or by post: Overpayments Team, 88-90 Pier Avenue, Clacton on Sea, Essex, CO15 1TN
What happens next?
We will consider your offer based on the income and expenditure details that you have provided.
We may suggest that you review your outgoings to make additional income available or to consider reducing non priority expenses.
Once we are satisfied that the income and expenses are accurate, we will advise you if the repayments can be reduced and the amount you should pay.
We may make a short term arrangement with you where we reduce the repayments for a set period of time and then review the arrangement in the future.
Why can't you just reduce the repayments?
We have a duty to protect the public purse and this includes efficiently recovering as much money owned to the Council as possible.
Where to get help and advice
Overpayments Team, Benefits Section, 88-90 Pier Avenue, Clacton on Sea, Essex, CO15 1TN, 01255 686811, email email@example.com
Citizens Advice Bureau, www.citizensadvice.org.uk/local/tendring/contact-us/, 01255 377080