Accessing Council Services:
You can now access services, get advice and support, and transact with us in the following ways:
- By accessing our wide range of 24/7 online services
- By emailing directly to the relevant service
- By phoning First Contact on 01268 882200 (8.45am to 5.15pm Mon to Thurs, and to 4.45pm on Fri).
- By pre-booked appointment at the Kiln Road office (9.00am to 4.00pm Mon to Fri) - these can be arranged by phoning First Contact on 01268 882200.
Discretionary Housing Payments
What is the Discretionary Housing Payment Scheme?
The Discretionary Housing Payment scheme was introduced to assist Housing Benefit claimants who may need further help with their housing costs.
The council receives some money from the Government towards the Discretionary Housing Payment scheme. The amount we can spend is limited and not everyone who claims a Discretionary Housing Payment will be given assistance.
Who can claim a Discretionary Housing Payment?
You must be receiving some Housing Benefit to be eligible to claim a Discretionary Housing Payment
You cannot receive more than the shortfall in your weekly eligible rent .
A Discretionary Housing Payment cannot help you with service charges not covered by the benefit scheme – such as heating, lighting, hot water, and other fuel costs or water rates, sewerage or other environmental costs
You cannot receive a Discretionary Housing Payment to make up for any reduction in other social security benefits as a result of any sanctions applied by the Benefits Agency
The amount awarded is entirely at the discretion of the council. Each individual case will be considered on its own merits. We will look at the individual circumstances of your claim and will consider the other options available to you before deciding whether to award a Discretionary Housing Payment.