Housing benefit and Council tax support - new claim

Housing Benefit helps you pay the rent for the home you live in.

Council Tax Support is a local Council Tax reduction scheme, to help you pay Council Tax for the home you live in. Both tenants and home owners can claim Council Tax Support, as long as you have a liability to pay Council Tax.

Claims for Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support are made online. You'll only have to answer the questions that are relevant to you and we'll let you know exactly what evidence you need to give us to verify your claim - saving you time, effort and money. If you want to make a claim you need to use our Housing benefit and council tax support calculatorYou can also use this form to make a claim for Free School Meals and Pupil Premium for full time pupils.

If you are thinking about making a brand new claim for benefit, it is very important that you read all the following information on this page before you start your claim. This will help make sure you have all the right information to hand before you start and will make claiming quicker for you.

How do I tell you about a change in my circumstances?

If you have already made a claim with us and want to tell us about a change in your circumstances, including a change of address please refer to our change of circumstances advice.

What information will I need to make a claim?

Before you start your claim please gather together details of your identity, plus all the income and capital that you will need to tell us about for both you and your partner, if you have one. This will include:

  • National Insurance Numbers
  • Wage slips (if you are paid weekly you will need your last five; if you are paid fortnightly you will need your last three; if you are paid monthly you will need your last two)
  • If you have over £6,000 capital (or over £10,000 if you are a pensioner) copies of your last two months' bank statements for all your accounts and details of any other capital that you have
  • Details of all your other income and benefits
  • Details of any child care costs you pay out
  • Details of which Council Tax band your home is in – this will be on your Council Tax bill
  • If you are claiming for Private Rented Accommodation, you will need to know your Local Housing Allowance rate. There is information about this on the Valuation Office website and in the Government’s “What You’ll Get” guide for Housing Benefit
    • Please note that single under 35s receive the shared bedroom rate.
    • If you are not sure what your Local Housing Allowance rate is, please just tell use your weekly rent figure; this may mean that the calculator will give you a less accurate result, however you can still carry on to make a claim if you wish to. The calculator will not affect your final level of benefit.

If we need any further information from you, we will tell you as soon as possible after you have submitted your claim to us.

How quickly do I need to provide information after I have submitted my application?

Please provide any information we ask for as quickly so that we can deal with your claim in the quickest possible time. You will have a month from the date you submit your application to provide the information we need. If you do not provide this information on time we will cancel your claim.

Do I need to provide original documents?

We will tell you if we need original documents or if we can accept copies.

Do not send original documents through the post. These can either be taken to your Local Housing Office, or brought to the Council House, Corporation Street, Derby DE1 2XG.

How do I make my claim?

Am I eligible?

If you want to make a claim you need to use our Housing benefit and council tax support calculator.

Important: as soon as you use the link to the Benefits calculator you will be given a reference number. Please write this down and keep it somewhere safe; you will need this again if you start your claim but then need to save it to return to later to finish off and submit it to us, or if you want to talk to us about your claim.

If you do not have this number when we ask you for it you may not be able to prove to us that you contacted us earlier about claiming. This may mean you do not get all the benefit you would have been entitled to.

The calculator is only a guide as to whether you may qualify for benefit. It can sometimes give less accurate results; for example:

  • if you have ineligible service charges - such as heating, lighting, hot water, cleaning, meals - included in your rent
  • if you live in Supported Accommodation - where your landlord provides care and support for you
  • Housing Options placements
  • if you are claiming for a Bed and Breakfast room

Even if the calculator tells you that you wouldn’t qualify, you can still carry on and make a claim if you wish to and we will review your information and give you a decision.

If you have already started your online claim by using the benefits calculator, you can complete your application. Once completed, you can see your submitted application at any time.

Do I need to apply directly to Derby City Council?

People who do not need to apply direct to Derby City Council

You may have already made your claim for Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support when you applied for one of these benefits:

  • Income Support
  • Job Seeker's Allowance Income Based
  • Employment Support Allowance
  • Pension Credit.

Sometimes the Department for Work and Pensions may need to send you an extra application form to complete so that you can claim Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support. They will tell you if they are going to send you a form and where to send the form back to.

People who must apply direct to Derby City Council

If you have not made a claim for one of the above benefits then you need to use the Benefits Calculator to see if you qualify.

What if I'm applying as part of a couple?

If you are claiming as part of a couple where one of you is a pensioner and the other is of working age, the pensioner should be the claimant when making the claim. This is because the claim form will automatically do a “Better Buy” calculation during your claim to see if you would be better off receiving a Second Adult Rebate instead of Council Tax Support.

I am an appointee for a claimant. How do I apply?

An appointee is a person who has been appointed to act on behalf of another – either by the Court of Protection or by Derby City Council’s Benefits section – for the purposes of claiming and receiving benefits. If you have been appointed by the Court of Protection, we will need to see proof of the terms of the Court Order.
We treat an appointee as if they were the claimant. If you are an appointee you should indicate this when asked on the claim form.

Can I make a claim if I receive Universal Credit?

If you are receiving Universal Credit you can still claim Council Tax Support and Free School Meals from the Council by using the online claim form.

Can I get help with opening a bank account?

If you require help with opening a bank account there is advice about this on the Money Advice Service website.

Privacy notice

We treat all the information you provide in confidence and in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998. For more information see our Privacy Notice.

Useful forms


Contact details

Post address:
Derby Benefits
Customer Service Centre
The Council House
Corporation Street
Phone: 01332 640444
Minicom: 01332 640666
Derby Benefits
Customer Service Centre
The Council House
Corporation Street