Backdating your Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support

Backdating Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support

If there has been a reason which stopped or delayed you applying for Council Tax Support you can ask for your claim to be 'backdated' so that it starts from an earlier date.

You can only ask for a backdate of benefits if there is a reason why you were unable to apply for your benefit earlier. If you disagree with the date your claim starts from for any other reason you can appeal against the decision.

In order for a backdate of Council Tax Support to be allowed you will have to show 'good cause' why you did not apply earlier. There is no formal definition of 'good cause'; each case will be decided according to its own individual situation. There are no formal time limits on making a backdate request, but the maximum period that a benefit claim can be backdated is 1 month for customers under 60 years old and 3 months for customers over 60 years old from the date we receive the backdate request.

What is considered to be a 'good cause'?
Good causes may include the following, depending on the circumstances.

  • You were ill and no-one else could claim for you
  • You were waiting for a decision about another benefit
  • You were given the wrong advice by an official organisation who said you were not entitled to housing benefit or council tax benefit (or both)
  • You did not understand that you could claim
  • You did not claim immediately after leaving hospital, prison or long term care
  • You were not able to manage your own affairs and had no-one to help you.
  • A close relative died

These examples are only a guide to help you.  They are not a full list of all possible reasons.