The government has changed the law to allow the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to share universal credit claimants’ personal data with social landlords, councils and charities.
On Friday, ministers laid down a controversial new statutory instrument to enable councils, housing associations, Citizens Advice bureaux, credit unions and charities to access information on universal credit claimants, so they can offer financial advice and support.
Half of all homeless people first become homeless aged under 21, with the majority going through the experience again and again because they don’t get the help they need, new research has revealed.
Conducted by Cardiff University for homelessness charity Crisis, the study is the first ever profile of single homeless people across England, Wales and Scotland, showing the reasons people first become homeless and the horrific consequences for their lives.
The Department for Work and Pensions has overturned a tribunal’s decision to exempt two brothers from the bedroom tax due to room size.
The landmark ruling is a blow to anyone hoping to challenge the bedroom tax solely by arguing that a room is too small to be considered a bedroom because of overcrowding definitions in the relevant Housing Acts in Scotland and England.
The head of a prominent regional lettings agency says the new immigration act being trialled in the Midlands from today, and possibly nationwide next year, could lead to agents accidentally discriminating.
It will also mean landlords will rely increasingly on agents who may have to change procedures to cope with the additional workload.
A welfare cheat who sent her children to private school and drove around in a BMW while illegally helping herself to £43,000 in housing and council tax benefits is facing prison.
Jurors at Croydon Crown Court heard that crooked Angella Brown, of Silverleigh Road, Thornton Heath, was also given a social home after lying to Croydon Council that she was homeless and forced to live in overcrowded conditions with a friend.
The proportion of private sector tenants evicted by their landlord or letting agent has fallen over the past year says the Residential Landlords Association.
According to the most recent English Housing Survey for 2012/13, just seven per cent of tenants who had moved in the last three years said that it was because they had been asked to leave by their landlord or agent. This compares with nine per cent in 2011/12.
More than 120,000 families in England's private rented sector (PRS) have suffered health problems in the last year as a consequence of landlords failing to deal with poor conditions in their homes, new research has revealed.
Commissioned by housing charity Shelter and British Gas, the YouGov survey of over 4,500 PRS tenants found that almost half had lived in a property with damp (44%) or mould (48%) in the past year - issues that can cause health conditions such as asthma and eczema.
Coastline Housing is planning its own pilot of universal credit in an attempt to assess the ‘real impact’ of the flagship benefit reform.
The 4,000-home south west association is set to become the first landlord to pay to test universal credit under more realistic conditions than the official pilot schemes run by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), in order to model the true cost of direct payment.
A proposed bill to exempt hundreds of thousands of households from the bedroom tax would lead to legal challenges, appeals and more administration costs for social landlords, sector experts have warned.
A private members bill to change the bedroom tax, tabled by Liberal Democrat backbencher MP Andrew George, passed its second reading in the House of Commons by 306 votes to 231 last Friday.
MPs will debate and vote on measures to change the bedroom tax as part of an ‘affordable homes bill’ today.
Liberal Democrat backbencher Andrew George has tabled a private members bill that would exempt people from the bedroom tax if they have not received a reasonable offer of alternative accommodation. It would also exempt disabled people whose home has been adapted.
Labour MPs are set to support proposed legislation that would water down the bedroom tax.
In an article for the blog website LabourList yesterday, Rachel Reeves,
shadow work and pensions secretary, confirmed that her party would vote
for the private members bill, tabled by Liberal Democrat MP Andrew
The government is introducing new rules that would allow housing associations to help prevent tenants claiming universal credit from falling into arrears.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) will be rolling out a pilot undertaken by Golden Gates Housing Trust, in which job centres can seek permission from tenants to inform their social landlord if they make a new claim for universal credit, across England.
Iain Duncan Smith is to signal a further crackdown on welfare in a speech suggesting that changes to the benefit system have lowered unemployment.
The Conservative might promise to lower the benefit cap from £26,000 to nearer to £18,000 in its general election manifesto.
A landlord must pay almost £1,000 after leaving his tenant without heating last winter.
Vivender Nath Blaggan, 47, of Stockton, allegedly left a rental property in the town with a faulty boiler for three months during the coldest part of the year.
A couple has been jailed for carrying out a seven-year fraud, using money to buy properties and finance mortgage repayments.
Nicole Mwamba, 48 was sentenced to 30 months in prison and William Kapuya, 47, was sentenced to 14 months. The couple were sentenced yesterday at Croydon Crown Court of 18 offences relating to the fraud, which took place between 2004 and 2011.
The Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) system has serious flaws causing "considerable distress and anxiety" and requires "fundamental redesign", the Work and Pensions Committee said in a report published today.
Simply "rebranding" the Work Capability Assessment (or WCA) used to determine eligibility for ESA by appointing a new contractor will not solve the problems, it said.
The Labour Party has accused the Liberal Democrats of ‘unbelievable hypocrisy’ over its change in stance on the bedroom tax.
The deputy prime minister Nick Clegg said that the Lib Dems no longer support the policy in its current form and now want an exemption for disabled people and for housing benefit to only be cut if households refuse an offer to move.
Government officials are piloting ways to force benefit claimants to undergo mental health treatment or risk losing their benefits, reports suggest.
A series of pilots combining help to work initiatives and mental health treatments, led jointly by the Department of Health and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), are due to be expanded within weeks
Another local authority has set out its proposals to introduce selective landlord licensing, with hefty £20,000 fines for those who do not fall into line.
Doncaster council is now consulting on the proposals for licensing in the Hexthorpe area because of alleged tenancy management and anti-social behaviour problems.
An agent who claimed nearly £4,900 in housing benefit despite renting out a house she co-owned has been given a 12 month community order and ordered to pay a total of £3,258 in costs and a victim surcharge.
Toni Wenlock from Rugby denies dishonestly making a statement to Rugby council in order to claim £4,830 in housing benefit; she also denies failing to tell the council of a change in her circumstances.