Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support normally start from the Monday after you claim. However, claims delayed for a good reason can be treated as made at an earlier date, and if you are a pensioner we can backdate your claim automatically.
If you are older than state pension credit age
If you are older than state pension credit age, we will automatically backdate your claim for Housing Benefit and local Council Tax Support for up to 3 months, provided that you qualify based on your circumstances at the time. You will not need to make a separate claim for backdating, but we will need to see proof that you were entitled to support for this period.
We cannot backdate your claim for more than 3 months, even if you would have qualified for Housing Benefit or Council Tax Support if you had applied for it.
If you are under pension credit age
If you are under pension credit age, you need to make a written request for backdating. We can backdate your Council Tax Support application for up to 6 months, and your Housing Benefit claim for up to 1 month, but you must be able to give good reasons for not making your claim earlier - such as being seriously ill and having nobody to make your claim for you.
Not knowing about Housing Benefit or Council Tax Support is not normally a good reason for backdating.
We look at each backdating request individually, and decide whether you have shown good cause for delaying your claim. Please give as much detail as you can, and also provide any evidence you have to support your request.
You can download a backdating request form (PDF 53KB) to help you provide the information needed.
Telephone: 0300 300 8306
Please quote your benefit claim reference in all correspondence – your claim reference is either an 8 digit number starting with 900, or a 5 digit number. You can find it on any letter we’ve sent about your Housing Benefit or Council Tax Support.