Direct payment

Under the Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rules, payments will normally be paid directly to the claimant.

We will review your situation every 6 to 12 months and will let you know about any changes.

When can you ask us to pay your landlord?

Claimants will not have the choice to request direct payments to their landlord, unless they:

  • have a learning disability that prevents them from managing their finances
  • have a medical condition that makes it hard for them to cope with routine tasks
  • have a physical disability that means that they are often housebound making it difficult for them to manage their affairs
  • experienced recent changes that has meant they need additional support in managing their affairs such as: bereavement; relationship breakdown; period in hospital; leaving prison, leaving care
  • speak English only as a second language, presenting obstacles to them in opening and running bank accounts; reading and dealing with invoices and bills
  • are dealing with (or have a history of) addiction to drugs, alcohol, gambling and paying them direct would present a risk of relapsing
  • have history of homelessness or rough sleeping and are receiving help to sustain a tenancy in the private sector
  • have severe debt problems such as county court judgements; bad credit rating that prevents opening bank accounts; undischarged bankruptcy

 

When will we only pay your landlord?

The Council may decide to make payments direct to your landlord because:

  • we believe you may have difficulty managing your own affairs
  • we believe that you are unlikely to use your LHA to pay your rent, this is usually when you have a history of rent arrears
  • you have built up 8 weeks or more rent arrears
  • you are having deductions made from your Income Support, Jobseekers’ Allowance or Guarantee Credit to pay off rent arrears
  • you qualify for backdated LHA or there has been a delay in processing your claim and a large amount of benefit is to be paid. In these cases we can decide to make the first payment of LHA by cheque payable to your landlord, but send it to you

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