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The current processing time for new applications and changes to benefit claims is an average of 6 weeks.

If you contact us with a general enquiry online we will reply to you within two working days.

You can only make a new claim for Housing Benefit if you meet one of the following criteria: 

  • You are single and of state pension credit qualifying age, or
    Part of a couple and are both of state pension credit qualifying age, or
    Part of a couple and been continuously receiving Pension Credit since at least 14/05/19
    You can find your Pension Credit qualifying age using Check your State Pension age  Opens in a new window
  • Qualify for the severe disability premium  Opens in a new window and receiving Income Support, Employment Support Allowance, Jobseekers Allowance or Housing Benefit or one of these benefits has ended in the last month
  • Live in supported accommodation
  • Have been placed in temporary accommodation by the Local Authority

If not you need to claim Universal Credit  Opens in a new window  for help with paying your rent.

If you make an appeal we will look at your claim again. If we can’t change the decision, we will send your appeal to an independent tribunal who will consider whether the law has been applied correctly. If they do not think it has, they can change the decision.

If your appeal is sent to Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunal Service, we prepare a case which includes your appeal, details of the law and the facts used to make the decision plus supporting evidence and documents.

We will send a copy of the appeal papers to you and your representative (if you have one) as well as to Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunal Service.  You should read all the papers carefully. If you do not understand something, you can ask an advice centre or solicitor to explain.

Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service will send you an enquiry form once they have received your appeal. It is important that you fill this in and provide any additional information they ask for otherwise they may end your appeal.

You can ask for either a hearing or to get a written response.

An appeal tribunal is heard by a Judge and completely independent of Torbay Council. They will only look at the evidence, the law and the circumstances at the time we made the decision you are appealing against.

If you do choose to go to a hearing you will have the opportunity to talk about your case with the Tribunal Judge.