I have a client who was being paid housing costs through HB until claiming UC about two years ago. UC has apparently never included the HCE which, in turn, is apparently because UC have been insisting that he provides a written tenancy agreement. He is unable to do this because he doesn’t have one and his landlord (fairly understandably) does not want to draft one because he is actively taking steps to evict the client. The client now has a possession hearing in a month where it looks likely he will lose his home if UC don’t pay the full HCE from the start of the claim.
Ordinarily in a case like this, I would want to have a dig through the journal to figure out what specifically had happened in terms of decision making and see where, if anywhere, a challenge can be directed in terms of official error or whatever else. The problem is that the claim is being dealt with as a telephone claim, so there is no journal and whoever picks up the phone at the DWP is hardly likely to be prepared to walk me line by line through everything which has happened since the start of the claim.
I realise that one possibility is to have the client make a subject access request so we can get the paper trail, but is there anything else worth considering to get to the bottom of this?