Housing Benefit Overpayment in Benefits and HMRC Posted January 4, 2010 Just letting you know I failed miserably at getting any justice done, the chief executive replied and admitted official error but i still have to pay it back. In my opinion the overpayment is unrecoverable due to the time taken to process the change of circumstances; had the council done this within the statutory 14 days there would have been little, if any, overpayment. The council had the opportunity to suspend the claim whilst they processed the change and yet they chose not to. As you have now received the final reply from the council's chief executive you are now able to take this matter to the Local Government Ombudsman who will make the final decision. Details of how to make a complaint to the Ombudsman can be found here Do not give up yet!!!