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Income support stopped - house classed as income, advice needed

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My partner and I separated back in March, she moved out of our jointly mortgaged home and moved into a rented property. I still live in our mortgaged property and we both agree we have no intention of selling just yet.

She started claiming income support in her new rented property and has been paid since March, last week they told her that her benefits would be stopped because she jointly owns her former home and it is classed as an income.

 

How can this be? She doesn't 'earn an income' from this house just as I don't.. Until we sell and make a profit of course.

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Did she mention the fact she jointly owns the property when applying for benefit. ?

 

Im no expert but someone could have tens of thousands of pounds which would debar them from benefits but if they suddenly bought a house they could get round the rules.

 

Andy

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Hi mate. Yes, they knew from when she first claimed that she jointly owned another property. We've owned the house for over 10 years.

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It may be that it doesn't apply if its your only property, it may be now that it's viewed as a second property, Maybe a benefit expert can jump in and help...or phone up Job Center BDC and try and get a clear answer, his will be difficult and you will have to pester them a lot to be finally put through (or arrange a callback) from someone who knows.

 

Andy

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I think Andy is right. As far as I know only if you own the home you live in will property not be counted as capital. As she is not living in the property anymore it is classed as capital and it is expected that you should either buy her out or sell the property and split the proceeds accordingly.

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Indeed, i bought a propertry with my brother, when he upped n got married, i bought his half of the property so it is now soley in my name now, i believe that is prob. the path that the DWP think that you should do.

 

My local paper did have a case of a local traveller facing court action as she claimed she had no money (and also was entitled to legal aid), it later emerged she owned half a £300,000 property with her hubby which she neglected to mention, this was all very dubious, she claimed they were kind of seperated and the house was bought in cash.

 

No doubt you (or your wife) havn't acted dishonestly but the same principles apply.

 

Andy

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the property would be disregarded for twenty six weeks from her date of claim, then steps would be expected to be taken to either sell the property in order to release any capital that your ex partner may have in it. This i becaue IS is a means tested benefit and the house would be classed as possible capital after the twenty six weeks have elapsed..

 

But a lot depends on the valauation and the amount of capital left after the mortgage has been paid, if there is no equity or little equity then it can sometimes be disregarded till such times that there is.

 

If you do put the house on the market and and show signs of this then the property can be disregarded for another twenty six weeks.

 

If you dont have any intention at all of selling the property then yes her claim will close.

Will you not have to sell it eventually anyway in view of the split ?

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