Housing Systems: Combating poverty and sustaining tenancies.
Providing Evidence: Time Limits

One month time limit

The claimant must provide any information reasonably asked for within a calendar month of being asked to do so. HB Reg 86 para 1.

HB forms will ask for the majority of information that is needed, so the calendar month will start from the date the form is received by the HB Office. If the claimant fails to provide this information within the calendar month their claim will be made defective.

If the HB Office write to the claimant requesting information which was not asked for on the form, or in response to a letter / phone call received from the claimant, the claimant has a calendar month from the date on this letter to provide this additional information.

Extending the time limit

If the claimant is having difficulty providing any information to the HB Office, they can request an extension of the calendar month to prevent their claim from being made defective. 

The HB Office can extend the time limit if they consider it reasonable to do so. HB Reg 86 para 1
Standard Letters EV1 & EV1A.

Not provided information requested

A HB Office cannot assess a claim until all the necessary information and evidence has been provided.

If the claimant fails to provide this, the HB Office can either: 

  • Make a decision that the claim is defective and not process the claim at all, or 
  • Make an "adverse inference" - ie assumption that the claimant is not entitled (because they haven't provided evidence to the contrary). 

In the latter case the claimant can submit the evidence and ask the HB Office to revise their decision that they were not entitled.

Claim declared 'defective' due to failure to provide information within time scales

Where the HB Office have made the decision that the claim is a defective claim - the claimant will need to submit a further claim form and the information required to process this claim, but it will only be paid from the Monday after this further 2nd claim has been submitted.

To try to get the 'missing' HB, the claimant can: 

  • Request that the second claim is backdated, and /or
  • Challenge the fact that the first claim was defective. For example it will not be 'defective' if the missing information was not originally requested on the claim form - follow the link for more information and a standard letter.

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