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  • FIRST POST
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 8th Sep 18, 12:17 AM
    • 18Posts
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    Angus Olivier
    Self employed HB claim
    • #1
    • 8th Sep 18, 12:17 AM
    Self employed HB claim 8th Sep 18 at 12:17 AM
    I'm self employed and I've made a claim for housing benefit. I provided everything that I need to provide. The reply that I got said that I need to show them income and expenses for a period of time that includes a previous claim during which I was also self employed, and during which I got housing benefit until it stopped 3 months after due to my income being very low.

    If I tell them what they're asking, they're going to see that my income was very low between the start of the previous claim all the way until now. And then they're just going to say no. I feel like they're going to judge my eligibility for housing benefit on the past, not my present circumstances.

    That doesn't seem right. Can they do this?
Page 2
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 9th Sep 18, 1:04 PM
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    Angus Olivier
    So lets try and get this straight.

    You only ever sent in a projection of self employed income for you first claim of self employment - you never sent in documentary evidence of your income and expenditure for this period of time?

    When we assess self employed income for someone newly self employed we use a projection for the first 13 weeks (3 months) of the claim. We then ask for 13 weeks income and expenditure to calculate the next 3 months HB entitlement.

    If the claimant fails to supply this the claim is suspended then cancelled.

    We never cancel a claim because someone isn't earning enough!

    Please clarify from the first time you claimed Housing Benefit to date what you income and financial circumstances have been month to month.

    Have you been self employed nil income self employed?

    For what periods did you get Housing Benefit?

    For any period of low or nil income where you got no Housing Benefit how have you survived and paid your rent?
    Originally posted by Afraid of Kittens
    I've sent you a message.
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 10th Sep 18, 1:32 PM
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    Angus Olivier
    If I give them evidence of my earnings week to week, won't they eventually pay? After all if I'm earning an income that is roughly equal to the minimum income whatever they call it or higher, that would make me eligible, don't you think? If it's ultimately based on income and I can show them what it is, surely they'd say yes after they've seen some bank statements over a few weeks.
    • Afraid of Kittens
    • By Afraid of Kittens 10th Sep 18, 2:40 PM
    • 147 Posts
    • 151 Thanks
    Afraid of Kittens
    If I give them evidence of my earnings week to week, won't they eventually pay? After all if I'm earning an income that is roughly equal to the minimum income whatever they call it or higher, that would make me eligible, don't you think? If it's ultimately based on income and I can show them what it is, surely they'd say yes after they've seen some bank statements over a few weeks.
    Originally posted by Angus Olivier
    Yes - if genuine and effective work there should be no problems.

    You qualify for permanent residence status so they should have stopped your claim and treated you as a person from abroad.

    They may have made an error by stopping your previous claim.

    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/555008/a6-2014.pdf

    Current position and unaffected cases
    4. Workers, the self-employed, and those who are not currently employed but who
    retain their worker status, are required under the European Union (EU) treaties to
    have the same access to social security as nationals of the host Member State.
    EEA nationals exercising their treaty rights to live and work in the UK have a right
    to reside and are exempt from the Habitual Residence Test (HRT) due to HB
    Regulation 10(3B)(a) to (c) and have full access to HB if they are workers, selfemployed,
    or retain their worker or self-employed status.

    Permanent residence status

    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/449157/a8-2015.pdf

    G e n ui n e a n d Eff e cti v e W or k

    073049 onwards

    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/690047/dmgch0703.pdf
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 10th Sep 18, 4:09 PM
    • 18 Posts
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    Angus Olivier
    Well it's good to know that whatever they say I can get hb once I start telling them what I'm earning.

    However there might be a bit of an issue. I believe I'm going to be getting paid monthly, meaning that I won't have anything to show for a few weeks.

    Also is there any chance of getting it backdated to when they stopped?
    • Afraid of Kittens
    • By Afraid of Kittens 10th Sep 18, 5:28 PM
    • 147 Posts
    • 151 Thanks
    Afraid of Kittens
    Well it's good to know that whatever they say I can get hb once I start telling them what I'm earning.

    However there might be a bit of an issue. I believe I'm going to be getting paid monthly, meaning that I won't have anything to show for a few weeks.

    Also is there any chance of getting it backdated to when they stopped?
    Originally posted by Angus Olivier
    Appeal for backdating. Looks like they might have applied wrong rules.
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 10th Sep 18, 6:43 PM
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    Angus Olivier
    Appeal for backdating. Looks like they might have applied wrong rules.
    Originally posted by Afraid of Kittens
    You mean all the way back to when they stopped it? Sure I'd like to but I thought they could only go back 1 month (which by the way I have already asked to backdate it 1 month prior to the date of this current claim).

    I'm still waiting for them to reply to me after I disputed their letter. I have no idea what they're going to say or what I can do if the answer is still no.
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 12th Sep 18, 8:39 PM
    • 18 Posts
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    Angus Olivier
    I have received a reply from the council.

    When I wrote to them I questioned what they were asking me to provide (earnings from the start of my last claim all the way to now, and ID (even though I'd already given them this).

    I was expecting them to explain their request, but they haven't. Instead they've responded in a way that I would never have expected. They are now saying that I am not eligible for housing benefit because my area is a universal credit (full service) area. I have checked and it seems that it has been so for some time. This means that their original response to me was pretty much totally irrelevant to begin with.

    So what does this mean? I will of course apply for it. I have done some basic research into universal credit and from what I understand you can get (formerly) housing benefit even if you have no income at all. I certainly don't plan to have nil income, but at least it would take some pressure off because presumably I wouldn't need to be earning a "significant amount" to qualify for "housing benefit".

    Have I got that right?
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 12th Sep 18, 8:41 PM
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    Angus Olivier
    SORRY FOR THE DUPLICATE POST.

    I have received a reply from the council.

    When I wrote to them I questioned what they were asking me to provide (earnings from the start of my last claim all the way to now, and ID (even though I'd already given them this)).

    I was expecting them to explain their request, but they haven't. Instead they've responded in a way that I would never have expected. They are now saying that I am not eligible for housing benefit because my area is a universal credit (full service) area. I have checked and it seems that it has been so for some time. This means that their original response to me was pretty much totally irrelevant to begin with.

    So what does this mean? I will of course apply for it. I have done some basic research into universal credit and from what I understand you can get (formerly) housing benefit even if you have no income at all. I certainly don't plan to have nil income, but at least it would take some pressure off because presumably I wouldn't need to be earning a "significant amount" to qualify for "housing benefit".

    Have I got that right?
    • calcotti
    • By calcotti 12th Sep 18, 8:57 PM
    • 439 Posts
    • 260 Thanks
    calcotti
    You should definitely apply for UC. You will be entitled to a basic amount plus housing costs (housing benefit replacement). However they may assume that you are earning a certain amount from self employment regardless of whether you actually are. They will need evidence self employment.

    Shocking that local authority did not tell you immediately that you are in UC area and could not apply for HB.:
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 12th Sep 18, 9:26 PM
    • 18 Posts
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    Angus Olivier
    You should definitely apply for UC. You will be entitled to a basic amount plus housing costs (housing benefit replacement). However they may assume that you are earning a certain amount from self employment regardless of whether you actually are. They will need evidence self employment.

    Shocking that local authority did not tell you immediately that you are in UC area and could not apply for HB.:
    Originally posted by calcotti
    Does this mean that I will get "housing benefit" (I know there's a 5 week wait) without having to prove any past income? To be honest I'm not really earning much right now. If so, could I get it backdated to when they stopped it a few months ago?
    • calcotti
    • By calcotti 12th Sep 18, 9:34 PM
    • 439 Posts
    • 260 Thanks
    calcotti
    Backdating of UC is very limited (maximum 1 month) and you have to have a good reason for not claiming sooner. If the DWP had given you incorrect information that could be a good reason, I’m not sure bad information from the local authority will count.

    Whether or not you get paid something will depend on what the DWP assume about your earn8ngs. As per previous post they can treat the self employed as earning a certain amount even if they are not.
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 12th Sep 18, 10:00 PM
    • 18 Posts
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    Angus Olivier
    Backdating of UC is very limited (maximum 1 month) and you have to have a good reason for not claiming sooner. If the DWP had given you incorrect information that could be a good reason, Iím not sure bad information from the local authority will count.

    Whether or not you get paid something will depend on what the DWP assume about your earn8ngs. As per previous post they can treat the self employed as earning a certain amount even if they are not.
    Originally posted by calcotti
    The thing is, I'm really not earning much at the moment. You mean they're going to treat it as though I'm earning a full time income from my part time self employed job? This isn't good.
    • calcotti
    • By calcotti 12th Sep 18, 10:06 PM
    • 439 Posts
    • 260 Thanks
    calcotti
    The thing is, I'm really not earning much at the moment. You mean they're going to treat it as though I'm earning a full time income from my part time self employed job? This isn't good.
    Originally posted by Angus Olivier
    They might. You wonít know until youíve made a claim and met with a work coach.
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 13th Sep 18, 12:06 AM
    • 18 Posts
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    Angus Olivier
    They might. You wonít know until youíve made a claim and met with a work coach.
    Originally posted by calcotti
    Actually it says here... ( https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/universal-credit/claiming/self-employed/ )

    "Some people will be exempt from the minimum income floor, eg if you're a lone parent of a child aged under 5 or caring for a severely disabled person - you'll discuss this with the Jobcentre during the application process. You're also exempt if you've been self-employed for less than 12 months."

    So it seems that if you claim UC and you're self employed, they'll leave you alone and give you 12 months to build up a significant income. I hope I've got that right.
    • calcotti
    • By calcotti 13th Sep 18, 6:51 AM
    • 439 Posts
    • 260 Thanks
    calcotti
    Actually it says here... ( https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/universal-credit/claiming/self-employed/ )

    "Some people will be exempt from the minimum income floor, eg if you're a lone parent of a child aged under 5 or caring for a severely disabled person - you'll discuss this with the Jobcentre during the application process. You're also exempt if you've been self-employed for less than 12 months."

    So it seems that if you claim UC and you're self employed, they'll leave you alone and give you 12 months to build up a significant income. I hope I've got that right.
    Originally posted by Angus Olivier
    Quite right - sorry, Iíd forgotten that you said that you had only recently returned to being self employed rather than being continuously self employed since your previous HB claim. The idea is to give you 12 months to make your self employment work, after 12 months you either have to take the financial hit or ask to be treated as a jobseeker in which case you have to start looking for work (although work search can be reduced to take account of self employment).

    Good luck.
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 14th Sep 18, 8:50 PM
    • 18 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Angus Olivier
    Thank you.

    By the way something has occurred to me :


    - Housing benefit was stopped in April.

    - My area became a universal credit full service area in July.

    - I made my claim for housing benefit a few weeks ago.

    When I made this claim a few weeks ago, I was under the impression that it was going to be regular housing benefit, not universal credit full service. Their first letter didn't mention this. They just asked me all that weird stuff that I mentioned earlier. It was only when I questioned what they were requesting that they replied saying I now have to go through universal credit, and they made no reference at all to my questions.

    I'm going to apply for universal credit in the next few days. When I do so, do I have, in their view, reasonable grounds to ask that they backdate the housing element? If so, how far?

    The reason why I ask is that if I'd known back in july that it was universal credit, I could have applied. The reason why I didn't is because I had no income and thought I wouldn't get it. Now I know that even with no income you can get your rent paid, although of course you'll be required to go to the job centre too.
    Last edited by Angus Olivier; 14-09-2018 at 8:56 PM.
    • calcotti
    • By calcotti 14th Sep 18, 9:12 PM
    • 439 Posts
    • 260 Thanks
    calcotti
    As I said in an earlier post (#31) I don’t the local authority giving you bad advice is going to be a good reason for the DWP to backdate a UC claim. However there’s no harm in asking.
    • Angus Olivier
    • By Angus Olivier 14th Sep 18, 9:20 PM
    • 18 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Angus Olivier
    As I said in an earlier post (#31) I donít the local authority giving you bad advice is going to be a good reason for the DWP to backdate a UC claim. However thereís no harm in asking.
    Originally posted by calcotti
    But I would have thought it would be the textbook definition of a good reason, i.e. one that is due to bad advice and not to due my own choices or misjudgment. I mean it's not like I knew and chose not to apply. I've had a lot of problems keeping up with my rent because of this. I could have avoided it all by claiming universal credit ages ago.
    • calcotti
    • By calcotti 14th Sep 18, 9:40 PM
    • 439 Posts
    • 260 Thanks
    calcotti
    But I would have thought it would be the textbook definition of a good reason, i.e. one that is due to bad advice and not to due my own choices or misjudgment. I mean it's not like I knew and chose not to apply. I've had a lot of problems keeping up with my rent because of this. I could have avoided it all by claiming universal credit ages ago.
    Originally posted by Angus Olivier
    As I said, no harm in asking. As previously said maximum backdating is one month.
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