Housing Benefit

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M
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Dear Sirs

We have an Assured Shorthold tenant who is currently over 3 months in arrears. The tenant is due to pay the rent calendar monthly in advance. The tenant receives Housing Benefit. We wrote to the Council dealing with the tenantís claim on 21 February 2014, by email, notifying the Council that the tenant was in arrears. On the date we contacted the Council, the tenant was over 2 months in arrears. We asked the Council to have the rent paid to ourselves in the future. I have been in touch with the Council today and they have acknowledged that they received the email. They have not however arranged for the rent to be paid to ourselves and have just sent the tenant the latest rent instalment. I understand that the Council are obliged to pay the rent to the landlord if the tenant is 2 months in arrears. I therefore asked the Council to send the latest rent payment to ourselves. They have refused on the basis that it has been sent to the tenant and say it is up to us to recover the payment from the tenant. I have argued that as they should not have sent the latest payment to the tenant it is for them to recover the payment from the tenant and arrange for the rent to be paid to ourselves from the date they were notified, namely the 21st February 2014. The Council have made a mistake here. Are they correct in stating that it is our responsibility to recover the money from the tenant or should this be their responsibility.

Kind regards
20/03/2014 11:23

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