Your benefit entitlement letter explained

What you should take note of

Once your benefit has been calculated, you will receive a decision in writing regarding your benefit entitlement.

You must read the entire letter and check it carefully. If any of the information is wrong or missing, or you don't understand how your benefit has been calculated, you should contact the Benefits service. You must do this within one month of the date of the letter otherwise we may not be able to consider your dispute.

It is therefore very important that you are familiar with the entitlement letter as it shows you everything we have used in calculating your claim.

What you should note:

Claim reference At the top right of the page is your claim reference number. You will need this number if you contact us about your claim.

Benefit enquiries At the top right of the page is the telephone number for  contacting us.

Reason for calculation This is the reason we have calculated your benefit.

Weekly benefit award 'Award' means what we can pay you. This is the amount of benefit you will get after any deductions, which may be less than the maximum eligible rent or council tax liability. This may be because of the money you have coming in or capital we have taken into account, or have other people over 18 living in your home.

Overpayment recovery If you have an overpayment of Housing Benefit, we may recover this from your ongoing entitlement. The amount shown is the weekly amount we are taking from your Housing Benefit entitlement.

Applicable amount This is an allowance based on your personal and family circumstances. These allowances and premiums are set by central government. The higher your net income is above your Applicable Amount, the less benefit you will be entitled.

Non-dependant deduction Non-dependants are any people over 18 who live with you. Under this heading we will list people over 18, their gross income and the deduction made because they live in your home. The government sets the amounts for the deduction. There are certain cases in which we will not make a deduction.