Discretionary Housing Payments Policy

Discretionary Housing Payments Policy

The main features of the Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) scheme are that:

  • They are discretionary (a customer does not have a statutory right to a payment).
  • DHPs are not a payment of Housing Benefit; however, a customer must be receiving Housing Benefit in the benefit week for which a DHP is awarded (as stated in Regulation 2(1)).
  • The amount that can be paid out by a local authority in any financial year is cash limited by the Secretary of State.

Aims of the Discretionary Housing Payment Policy

The Revenues and Benefits Service is committed to working with social landlords, the voluntary sector and other interested parties in the borough to maximise entitlement to all available state benefits. This will be reflected in the administration of the Discretionary Housing Payment scheme.

The Revenues and Benefits Service will consider each case strictly on its own merits and will treat all customers equally and fairly; and through the operation of this policy will seek to:

  • Alleviate poverty.
  • Encourage and sustain customers in employment.
  • Safeguard residents in their homes.
  • Ensure tenancy sustainment and homelessness prevention.
  • Help those who are trying to help themselves.
  • Keep families living together.
  • Help customers through personal crises and difficult events.
  • Support the vulnerable or elderly in the local community.
  • Consider rent officer restrictions such as local reference rent or shared room rate and take into account the impact of the Local Housing Allowance (LHA) changes and in particular the affect on those aged between 25 and 35.
  • Consider the impact of non-dependant deductions.
  • Consider the impact of income tapers.
  • Promote good educational outcomes for children and young people.
  • Support the families of armed forces personnel.
  • Consider the impact on families of the benefit cap.

Apply for Discretionary Housing Payment

If you think you may qualify for extra help, you must complete a Discretionary Housing Payment application form.

Document last updated
Thursday, 30 September 2021
Document type