Benefit claim and calculator

Universal Credit is now live in Hackney. If you need help with your rent, you should now claim Universal Credit from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).

What is Universal Credit?

Universal Credit is administered by the DWP. It’s a single monthly payment that covers both living and housing costs and replaces:

  • jobseekers’ allowance (income-based JSA)
  • employment and support allowance (income-related ESA)
  • income support
  • child tax credit
  • working tax credits
  • housing benefit

This means the Council will not be paying most new claims for housing benefit. If you’re on a low income and need help with your rent, you should claim universal credit from the DWP.

If you’re already claiming housing benefit, your housing benefit will not be affected unless your circumstances change.

Claim universal credit

People who can still claim housing benefit

  • if you’re a pensioner (over state pension age), you must still claim housing benefit – for couples, both individuals must be over pension age

You will need to claim housing benefit and universal credit if you’re living in:

  • supported exempt accommodation
  • temporary accommodation provided by the Council

If you’re not sure whether this applies to you, please call us on 0208 356 3399. If you’re not in the above categories and need to make a new claim for housing costs or help with rent – you’ll need to claim universal credit.

From 27 January 2021, if you receive a severe disability premium you can no longer make a new claim for housing benefit, and must apply for Universal Credit. If you’re already claiming, you won’t be affected unless you change your circumstances.

Council tax reduction

If you need help towards your council tax, you must continue to claim council tax reduction from us.

Calculate your council tax reduction or housing benefit and make a claim

Start a new calculation / claim  Return to a saved calculation / claim

The calculator will only give you an estimate of your potential benefit. An accurate decision can only be made after we have received your application and documentation.

For support applying online please tel 020 8356 3399.

Privacy notice

If you apply for housing benefit or council tax reduction we can share information collected as part of your application with other council departments, other local authorities, the Department for Work and Pensions and, in some circumstances, your landlord and other organisations. For more details, read our privacy notice:

Page updated on: 29 April 2021

Benefits contact line


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