Change of circumstance forms

What do I need to do if my circumstances change? 

Whilst you are getting benefit you must tell us straight away if any of your circumstances change, and if any of the circumstances of anyone living with you change. It is an offence not to tell us about any changes that may affect your benefit. We may take court action against you and if we pay you too much benefit, you will probably have to pay it back.

You must tell us if:

  • any of your children leave school or leave home
  • anyone moves into or out of your home (including lodgers and sub-tenants)
  • your income or the income of anyone living with you changes, including changes to benefits
  • your capital or savings change
  • you or anyone living with you becomes a student, goes on a youth training scheme, goes into hospital or a nursing home, goes into prison, or changes or leaves a job
  • your rent changes
  • you move
  • you or your partner are going to be away from home for more than a month
  • you or anyone living with you starts work
  • you receive any decision from the Home Office

This is not a full list. If you are not sure, ask us for advice.

If you report a change which results in you getting more benefit, we will amend your benefit from the Monday after the change happened, but only if you tell us within one month of the change happening. If you tell us late, your benefit will only be amended from the Monday after you tell us.

If the change results in you getting less benefit, we will amend your benefit from the Monday after the change happened. If you delay in telling us about the change, you will be responsible for any overpayment.

To tell us about a change in your circumstances you can complete our e-form below.

Housing benefit and council tax support change of circumstances e-form [e-form opens in a new window]

Discretionary housing payments (DHP's) 

DHP's are payments that we may be able to award you for help with your rent, if it is not met in full by Housing Benefit or the housing element of Universal Credit. We are unable to award DHP’s to cover your Council Tax or with costs included in your rent for fuel, water or food charges.

The amount and length of a DHP award will depend on your personal circumstances. We look at all cases individually.

The DHP fund is cash limited, so we may only be able to pay you for short periods. The payment of a DHP is only meant to give you short-term financial assistance to allow you to improve your circumstances, or to move to cheaper accommodation.

Please use this e-form to apply for a DHP: Discretionary housing payment form [e-form opens in a new window]

Housing benefit and/or council tax support rapid reclaim 

If you have claimed housing benefit or council tax support at the same address within the last 26 weeks then you can reapply using our rapid reclaim e-form:

Rapid reclaim e-form [e-form opens in a new window]

If you are applying at a new address or your previous application was over 26 weeks ago you will need to complete our housing benefit and council tax support application e-form [e-form opens in a new window]

Housing benefit and council tax support change of address 

If you are currently claiming housing benefit or council tax support, in the Darlington area, and are changing address you can use this e-form to tell us about your new property and how this has affected your circumstances.

HBCTS change of address e-form [e-form opens in a new window]

What happens if I need to move before my old tenancy has ended? 

If you are moving from one rented property to another, you might be able to get housing benefit on both of them for up to four weeks. This would help you pay for any notice period required on the old property. To qualify for payments on two homes, you need to have moved into your new property, ideally at the start of the new tenancy and to tell us:

  • why you had to move to your new address before your old tenancy ended
  • why the overlapping charge for rent on both properties could not have been avoided

You can do this by completing our overlapping tenancy application e-form:

Overlapping Tenancy e-form [e-form opens in a new window]

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