If a tenant is at least two months in arrears, and is claiming Housing Benefit, but the Council have not finished processing the claim, it must be remembered that tenants do not acquire any extra rights to pay rent late just because they are claiming Housing Benefit. The landlord is fully entitled to serve a Section 8 notice on the tenant for repossession on ground 8,preferably sending the Housing Benefit office a copy Ė this might help to speed things along. Also tell the Housing Benefit office that if payment is not received now, possession proceedings will be commenced. Also request that the Housing Benefit payments are made directly to you, the landlord, as the rent is over eight weeks in arrears.
Donít forget, if you serve a notice of repossession on the tenant, and he remains in the property after the expiry of the notice, he is still liable for the rent, whether he is on Housing Benefit or not. Service of notice of possession does not alter the tenantís obligation to payment.