Making a benefit claim

On this page you can find out about making a claim for Council Tax Reduction (CTR), Universal Credit, Housing Benefit, Discretionary Housing Payment and Local Housing Allowance (LHA).​​

​Council Tax Reduction (CTR)

If you live in the Newham you can make a claim for Council Tax Reduction if you:
  • Have a liability to pay Council Tax
  • Are aged 18 or over
  • Are working or unemployed
  • Are receiving universal credit
Not everyone who makes a claim is entitled to receive it.
You cannot get CTR if you have more than £16,000 in savings, stocks and shares or other capital unless you also receive Guaranteed Pension Credit. 

Universal Credit and Housing Benefit

Universal Credit

From 25 July 2018 Universal Credit has started to replace Housing Benefit for most working age people in Newham.

If you need help paying your rent, most people (other than a few exempt groups listed in the section below) must apply for Universal Credit from the Department for Works and Pensions and not housing benefit.
Delaying making a claim for Universal Credit may result in you losing benefit as Universal Credit is not usually backdated.

Help with your Council Tax is not included in Universal Credit. If you are having difficulty paying your council tax, you can claim Council Tax Reduction​.

Housing Benefit

You can only make a new claim for Housing Benefit if:
  • ​You have reached State Pension age (if you have a partner, from 15 May 2019 both of you must be of pension age).
  • You live in sheltered or supported accommodation (care, support and supervision provided and it is supplied by a landlord that is a Relevant Body).
  • You live in temporary accommodation provided or arranged through the council.
  • You are receiving the severe disability premium​ or are entitled to it as part of any of the following income based benefits that you receive:
    - Jobseeker’s Allowance
    - Employment Support Allowance
    - Income Support.
  • You were receiving or entitled to the severe disability premium in the last month and are still eligible for it. 

Read the Direction of the Chief Executive​ for further information about making a claim electronically.​


Discretionary Housing Payment

You may get a discretionary housing payment if you are already getting Housing Benefit or Universal Credit.
Things that we take into account are:
  • a non-dependant deduction
  • if your benefit has been reduced due to the benefit cap
  • you are a council tenant or a housing association tenant who is affected by the ‘bedroom tax’ and have exceptional circumstances
  • you are a private tenant and we think your rent is too high
  • your income means you do not get full benefit.

Local Housing Allowance (LHA)

We use LHA to calculate how much Housing Benefit you can receive if you rent privately.
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