Housing Systems: Combating poverty and sustaining tenancies.

Changes in Circumstances: Temporary Absence
The Universal Credit Regulations (Schedule 3) state that a claimant who is away from home, or is expected to be away from their home, for more than 6 months will not be treated as living in the property ie no Housing Costs Element will be included in their claim for Universal Credit.

So if the claimant is away from their home for exactly 6 months or less - then regardless of the reason for the absence* - they will still be treated as living in the property and therefore entitled to a Housing Costs Element when their UC is assessed.

* special rules apply to absences abroad and for fleeing violence.

Whether Universal Credit will continue to be paid will depend on whether they continue to meet the other claiming criteria including their claimant commitment.

Please click on the links below for more information.

Fleeing Violence

Find out what happens when someone is absent from home due to fleeing violence.

In Prison / Remand

What happens when the claimant (or partner) are in prison or on remand?

Going Abroad

How does going abroad affect a Universal Credit claim?

Hospital / Respite

Can Universal Credit be paid whilst someone is in hospital / respite care?

Decant / Repairs

What happens when a Universal Credit claimant is unable to live in their normal home due to it needing major works / repairs?

Other Absences

Click here if the claimant is away from their normal home for any other reason to find out what happens to their UC award.

6 month rule

How the 6 month rule works.


How the rules work for couples.





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