Overpayments - Blaby District Council

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Overpayments

Summary

When we pay you too much Housing Benefit or Council Tax support it is called an overpayment. This can occur if you have a change in your circumstances. 

If you do have a change and do not tell the benefits team straight away you may be overpaid. Sometimes even if you tell us straight away there can still be an overpayment. This may be because of various reasons including: the way your benefit is paid, when and how frequently, or if the Benefits Team has a large amount of work outstanding.   

The frequent causes of an overpayment are:

  • A change in income or capital of yourself or a member of your household

  • A change in a government benefit

  • You have changed address

  • Your household has changed (someone moved in or out)

What happens when an overpayment occurs:

If you are overpaid we will send you a decision letter. This will explain to you:

  • The dates that the overpayment covers

  • The weekly amount of benefit you were paid at the time

  • The weekly amount of benefit you should have received at the time

  • The weekly amount overpaid

  • The number of weeks that you have been overpaid

  • The total amount that you have overpaid

  • The reason for the overpayment (or reasons)

  • From whom the overpayment is to be recovered

If we paid your landlord the overpaid amount we can ask them to repay the overpayment, but we always have the right to recover from you. If we paid the benefit to your landlord, but you have committed benefit fraud we would usually seek recovery of the overpayment from you. 

Recovery of overpaid benefit

  • If you continue to receive housing benefit we can recover the overpayment from your new on-going weekly award. This is called on-going benefit recovery. The recovery rate that we use will vary depending on your income and circumstances.

  • Whilst on-going benefit deductions are made from your benefit to recover the overpayment it is important that you pay the recovered amount in addition to any rent you already pay to ensure you do not fall into arrears.

  • If the rate of deduction causes you financial hardship then you should contact the benefits team to discuss the matter.

  • If you no longer receive housing benefit then we will send you an invoice with instructions on how to pay.  When you receive the invoice please contact the Overpayments Team on 0116 272 7763 or email benefits@blaby.gov.uk before the due date to either pay in full or to discuss an arrangement to pay by instalments.

  • If your overpayment is for Council Tax Support (which replaced Council Tax Benefit on 1 st April 2013) then we will usually recover the overpayment amount directly out of your council tax account.  You would then usually receive an amended bill.

It is important that you do not ignore a request for payment from the Benefit Team. If you do not contact us by the due date further action will be taken which includes:

  • Asking the DWP to recover the overpayment from your other benefits
  • Asking an external debt collection agency to start recovery action

  • Approach the Court and ask for a County Court Judgement (CCJ) for the overpayment.  This will incur additional costs (and interest) which you will have to pay back to us.  The overpayment will then be pursued by the court.

If you do not agree with the overpayment you have the right to ask for an explanation or appeal against the decision.

The minimum recovery from on-going benefit is £10.95 per week or £18.25 per week if fraud has been proven.The recovery rates may be increased depending on your financial circumstances.

Related Pages

Contact

Benefits Team  
Blaby District Council  
Council Offices  
Desford Road  
Narborough  
Leicester  
LE19 2EP

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E-Mail:
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Telephone:
0116 272 7510
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Fax:
0116 272 7591
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Minicom:
0116 284 9786
Last updated: 04 April 2014

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