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Housing benefit & Council tax overpayments advice needed please

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good morning

I’m struggling to sleep due to the constant worrying after yesterday’s phone call regarding my housing benefit and council tax Benefit claims.


My partner started a new job at the end of September and after notifying the council of her new job

I must admit was around a month after starting the claim was suspended for 2 months

after them requesting pay slips and dates she called again yesterday for a update.


She came off the phone in tears stating we are £7000 in arrears

£5k in housing benefit and

£1900 council tax arrears.

We fully dispute the amounts owed


it also transpires that they hadn’t even updated her previous new job that she started in February.


They have now asked for the last 2 years worth of payslips which we have


they have stated they will take £11 a week out of our new housing benefit Payments weekly to cover the £5k

but council tax are demanding the full amount now something we just don’t have


with the threats of court and prison could someone advise on what we can possibly do to get help with the council tax arrears ?


I’ve asked for a new review to be done once I take in the payslips on Wednesday

but that’s going to take a while to sort


we currently are extremely worried with 4 young children a few days before Xmas


I seriously don’t know what to do next thanks in advance and sorry for the long post

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I would suggest that you both should stay off the phone. This achieves nothing apart from more stress. Deal in writing and send to the council by signed for delivery, expensive but proves your letters get there.


I would raise a formal complaint regarding the way your benefit claim has been handled. Yes, you should have informed them of the new job straight away but even a month later is no massive issue. What is the issue is the fact that they didn't update the claim from February. People will answer the phone, do very little, reassure that all has been done then ignore everything so as a separate issue to the complaint, send a SAR.


A Subject Access Request costs £10 and you want all data regarding the housing benefit/council tax and call logs for the length of your claim. I would also request a copy of the complaints procedures and the benefits policy in place.


Dealing by letter reduces the stress levels and puts in black and white proof of what is said.

If you are asked to deal with any matter via private message, PLEASE report it.

Everything I say is opinion only. If you are unsure on any comment made, you should see a qualified solicitor

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Email and call your local elected councillor immediately, and your elected local head of council. All Emails / mobiles should be available on a Google search.


Explain the situation to them, exactly the way you have explained it here ! These are the people most likely to be able to fix this rapidly. Talking to anyone at the council Tax Call centre is utterly pointless.

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