Local Welfare Support Team
What is a Discretionary Housing Payment? A Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) is a special payment paid to individuals where it is considered they need extra help with their rent. A DHP is not part of the normal Housing Benefit Scheme. The Council is given an amount of money to pay out each year on DHP's and cannot spend more than the allocated amount given by Government. Each application is considered on its own merit. Criteria to claim DHP 1. You must be entitled to Housing Benefit or the Housing Element of Universal Credit 2. Your circumstances must mean you need extra help with your rent 3. The maximum DHP payment you are able to claim is the difference between your eligible rent and the amount of Housing benefit you receive. 4. A DHP cannot be paid as help towards rent arrears, council tax arrears or other loans or debt. How to apply 1. You must complete a DHP application form and return it to the Children's Hub at the Civic Centre 2. You can obtain an application form by calling into the Civic Centre, contacting the Children's Hub on 01429 284284. 3. If you require assistance with filling in the application form, please speak to a Customer Service officer at the Civic Centre. What information is needed? 1. To be able to pay your claim the Children's Hub must be satisfied you need extra help with your rent. 2. The Children's Hub shall compare your income and your outgoings and establish if you have enough money to pay your rent. 3. The Children's Hub will need details of your income, savings and outgoings. 4. All questions must be answered in full on the application form or the form shall be returned to you. How long can a DHP be paid for? 1. A DHP shall be paid for set period that is agreed by a panel of Children's Hub Officers. 2. There are no time limits for how long a DHP can be paid. 3. Once your award has run out you can re-apply and your circumstances shall be reviewed again. How is a DHP paid? Your DHP payment shall be paid with your normal method of Housing Benefit/ Housing Element payments. What if I disagree with the decision? The decision to award or refuse a DHP is at the discretion of Hartlepool Borough Council. You cannot appeal against the decision. However, if you do disagree or your circumstances have changed you may request a review of the decision. This request must be in writing within 14 days of the decision. You must provide further information you feel is relevant to support your application.