We have a client who has been refused a DHP lump sum for rent arrears on the basis that they were not in receipt of HB or UC (HE) during the period when the arrears accrued. I have always understood that the client only needed to be in receipt of HB/UC(HE) at the time the DHP application was submitted in order to qualify but not necessarily throughout the period when the arrears accrued. I then checked the guidance which appears to back the Decision Maker as para 20 of the DHP Guidance Manual (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/discretionary-housing-payments-guidance-manual/discretionary-housing-payments-guidance-manual) states: “20. The DFA regulations require that a DHP can only be considered for a period where the linked HB or relevant award of UC is payable. This is of particular relevance to requests for a period of backdated DHP, since backdating cannot cover arrears accrued while not in receipt of these benefits.”
However, when I checked The Discretionary Financial Assistance Regulations 2001 I cannot see any mention of the fact that the client must have been in receipt of HB/UC(HE) during the period when the arrears accrued. Is there a disconnect between the regs and the guidance or am I missing something?
Thanks – Andy.