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Discretionary housing payments

The bedroom tax

If your housing benefit has been restricted in spite of the need of a disabled adult or child in your household to have a separate bedroom, then you should make an application for a ‘discretionary housing payment’ (DHP).

Most local authorities have a form on which to request DHPs. If your local authority does not, write a letter instead. The authority may ask for detailed information about your circumstances and those of your household. Explain these fully, including any disability needs that anyone has.

The government has issued guidance to councils to give priority to people whose homes have had significant disability adaptations and those adults with long-term medical conditions or disabilities that create difficulties in sharing a bedroom.

The housing benefit appeals system does not apply to DHPs, but you have the right to ask the local authority to look again at its decision if you are dissatisfied.

The DWP has published a Discretionary Housing Payments Guidance Manual

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