Bridgend County Borough Council,Civic Offices, Angel Street, Bridgend, CF31 4WB

Tel: 01656 643643
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An overpayment is where you have been paid more Housing Benefit, Local Housing Allowance or Council Tax Reduction than you are entitled to. An overpayment may be caused by a change in your circumstances that you did not tell us about in time. Examples of changes that can cause overpayments are:

  • An increase in your income.
  • Someone moving into your home.
  • If you have other adults living with you, their circumstances may have changed.
  • You are moving out of the property.

How will I know if I have an overpayment of Housing Benefit?

When an overpayment of housing benefit has been identified we shall write to you. Normally the first letter you will receive will give you the details of the potential overpayment of benefits and will give you one calendar month to provide further information so that the overpayment can be correctly worked out.  After this period the final overpayment figure will be calculated and we shall decide whether or not the overpayment is recoverable.  If recoverable, a letter will be sent to all parties from whom we may recover the overpayment. 

The letter will tell you:

  • There is a recoverable overpayment.
  • What caused the overpayment.
  • The dates and the amount of the overpayment.
  • How the overpayment was calculated.
  • A list of the parties from whom the overpayment may be recovered.
  • What to do if you disagree with the overpayment. At the same time a further letter will be sent to the person from whom we intend to recover the overpayment, advising them how we intend to recover the overpayment.

How is the overpayment recovered?

  • If you are still getting Housing Benefit we may reduce this each week by the amount shown on your notification letter. If you feel that the amount we are recovering each week is causing you hardship, you can write to ask us to lower it. Please note that we may ask for more details.
  •  If you stop getting Housing Benefit or Local Housing Allowance we may send you a bill.
  • If we paid your benefits to your landlord we may ask the landlord to repay us.

What if the overpayment wasn’t my fault?

Even if the overpayment wasn’t your fault you may still be required to repay - for example, if it was reasonable to expect you to realise that you were being overpaid.

Can I appeal against an overpayment?

Yes you can appeal against an overpayment. You must do this in writing and you have one calendar month from the date you were notified about the overpayment to do this. You can only appeal against the calculation and the recoverability of the overpayment.

You must write down the decision you are appealing against and the reasons for your appeal and make sure you sign it. If our decision is wrong we shall change it. If the decision cannot be changed the appeals service will then look at your appeal at a tribunal hearing. The tribunal is independent from the council and is made up of legally qualified people trained in Housing Benefit..

If your appeal is late you must include an explanation of why you could not appeal within one month.

Please do not ignore any letters we send to you about an overpayment, as debts will not go away. If we have to take further action to recover the debt through the courts the amount you owe will increase.


How will I know if I have been overpaid Council Tax Reduction?

When an overpayment has been identified you will be sent a revised council tax demand showing the amendment. This is different to Housing Benefit as council tax reduction is not a benefit and the process is different.  You must continue to pay the amount due on your original bill until you are notified otherwise.

Should you disagree with this decision you can write to us and ask us to look at the decision again and we will look at your case and respond within two months.


How is the overpayment recovered?

Any adjustments will be made to your council tax account and you will receive a revised council tax demand. 

Can I appeal against an overpayment of council tax reduction?

If you are not satisfied then you can appeal which should be addressed to the Valuation Tribunal for Wales, South Wales Region, Gold Tops, Newport, NP20 4PG       


Last Updated: 03/12/2014
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