Sometimes, you may want your housing benefit and/or council tax support to start from a date before you made your claim. This is called backdating.
Backdating can only be allowed where there are exceptional circumstances that prevented a claim from being made earlier. For example:
- you were too ill to claim and there was no one else who could help you
- you've tried to get details about claiming benefit but got the wrong advice
- you have difficulty speaking English and didn't understand you could claim
We wouldn't normally allow backdating if your claim was delayed because you forgot to claim or weren't aware that you were entitled.
Claim as soon as you can
In any event, it's always best to make your claim as soon as possible. Don't delay because you can't provide the evidence we need. Send your claim to us and provide the evidence later.
The rules about when we can backdate depend on whether or not you have reached the qualifying age for State Pension Credit.
If you are of working age the most we can backdate the start date of your claim is one month from the date you send in your request. If you are of State Pension Age the most we can backdate the start date of your claim for Housing Benefit is 3 months from the date you send in your request.