Discretionary Housing Payments

Discretionary Housing Payments can help people that need extra support with their housing costs, because they are suffering exceptional hardship. 

Find out:

We only have a limited amount of money for Discretionary Housing Payments, so not all applications will be successful. Discretionary Housing Payments are not a long term solution for financial difficulties.

Who can apply for Discretionary Housing Payments?

You can apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment if you receive Housing Benefit or the housing costs element of Universal Credit, and are unable to pay your rent because of exceptional hardship.

We need to understand your situation and circumstances, so that we can decide whether we can give you extra help towards your housing costs. We will ask you about your home, your household and the reasons why you are not able to afford your rent.

You will need to provide detailed information about your income and expenditure, investments, bank accounts, and any outstanding debts you have. You will also need to supply evidence, including proof of your tenancy agreement and bank accounts.

Information you will need

Make sure that you have answers to the following questions before making your claim.

Anything that is marked in bold is proof you will need to provide when you apply:

We need to know about:

Expand all

We will ask about:

  • the date you moved into your home
  • your previous address
  • your reason for moving home
  • who you rent your home from - please provide your tenancy agreement
  • if you have asked your landlord to reduce your rent, and what they said
  • if you are behind with your rent
  • how much rent you owe, and how your arrears came about - we need to see proof of rent arrears
  • if you have been served with an eviction notice - please provide your eviction notice
  • if you have tried to find a cheaper home, and what the outcome was
  • reasons why you need to stay in your current home rather than finding a cheaper property

We will ask about:

Any housing waiting lists you are on, including:

  • the name of the housing association or agency
  • when you went on their list
  • the banding you have been given

Details of any tenancies you have been offered, or bids you have submitted, including:

  • the address
  • landlord
  • property size
  • rent amount

We will ask if:

  • anyone in your household has a health problem or disability - please provide medical evidence, such as a doctor's letter
  • your home been substantially adapted to meet the disability needs of a member of your household
  • a member of your household requires an additional bedroom due to a disability
  • you or your partner used the mobility component of Disability Living Allowance to obtain a car under the Mobility Scheme
  • you need an additional bedroom for an overnight carer
  • you need an additional room due to foster care responsibilities - let us see proof from Derbyshire County Council or the foster agency
  • any members of your household are expecting a baby within the next three months
  • any members of your household will become 10 or 16 years of age in the next three months
  • you need an extra bedroom for a son or daughter in the armed forces who normally lives with you, but is currently away on operation
  • you need an extra bedroom for a person who normally lives with you, but is temporarily absent (for example, they are in hospital, in care, in prison, working or studying away)
  • you have been homeless within the last 3 years

You will also need to provide your National Insurance Number.

We will need you to tell us what income you receive and whether it is received monthly or weekly:

  • your wages
  • your partner's wages
  • State Pension
  • company or private pension
  • Pension Credit
  • Statutory Sick Pay or company sick pay
  • Universal Credit
  • Employment Support Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Jobseeker's Allowance
  • Child Benefit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Incapacity Benefit
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Personal Independence Payments
  • Industrial Injuries Disability Benefit
  • Carer's Allowance
  • Bereavement Allowance
  • Maternity Allowance
  • other state benefits
  • student grants, loans, bursaries
  • maintenance
  • rental income
  • money from anyone who lives with you
  • other income you receive

We will tell you what proof we need to see.

We will need you to tell us what you spend and whether it is paid monthly or weekly:

  • mortgage
  • rent
  • Council Tax
  • water charges
  • gas
  • electricity 
  • TV rental and licence
  • satellite or digital TV subscriptions
  • internet / broadband costs
  • home phone
  • mobile phone 
  • groceries
  • alcohol
  • toiletries
  • clothing
  • cigarettes or tobacco products
  • prescriptions 
  • car fuel
  • car insurance
  • road tax
  • car maintenance
  • other travel expenses
  • life assurance or endowment premiums
  • private health schemes
  • childcare
  • Housing Benefit overpayments
  • regular payments towards your personal student loan
  • other expenditure

We will tell you what proof we need to see.

We will need you to tell us the current balance, repayment amount and frequency:

  • rent arrears
  • mortgage arrears
  • unpaid Council Tax
  • overdue water charges
  • fuel debts: gas
  • fuel debts : electricity 
  • credit cards
  • catalogue accounts
  • payday loans
  • other unsecured loans
  • secured loans 
  • magistrates / court fines
  • unpaid maintenance
  • DWP or HMRC overpayments
  • Social Fund debts
  • Universal Credit 

We will tell you what proof we need to see.

We will ask you to tell us the name of the bank or organisation, sort code, account number, and account balance for all:

  • bank accounts
  • building society accounts
  • Post Office accounts
  • Credit Union accounts

You will need to provide copies of statements or passbooks for all accounts for the last three months. 

We will ask you to tell us the type of investment, quantity held and value for all:

  • shares
  • investment bonds
  • premium bonds

We will let you know what proof we need to see.

You need to provide information for you AND your partner if they live with you - this includes your husband or wife, civil partner or person you are living with as a couple.

You can use the checklist below to make a note of your income and expenses before you start the form.

If our documents are not accessible to you, you can request a different format here.
Discretionary Housing Payment financial checklist Word (Word 32 KB)

Apply online

The easiest way to claim is online - this means you don't have to apply in person or send anything through the post.

The Discretionary Housing Payment claim form could take you around an hour to fill in. You won't be able to save the form part way through so it's important to have all the information above ready before you start.

You can upload electronic copies, scanned images or clear photos of the proof we have asked for.

You can claim online through your My Chesterfield account, so that you can track your application and manage your benefit account if your claim is successful.  

If you don't want to sign-up for a My Chesterfield account you can:

Claim online here

Protecting your privacy - find out how we keep your information safe.

Need any help?

You can give us permission to discuss your details with your landlord, Citizens Advice, Derbyshire Law Centre or another person who is helping you with your application.

We can also help you make your claim - call us on 01246 345484 or 01246 345507 and we will be happy to help.

If you can't claim online

The fastest and easiest way to apply is using our online claim form. If you can't apply online you can download and print the claim form below. You will need to return it by post to:

Chesterfield Borough Council, Benefits Section, Customer Service Centre, Town Hall, Chesterfield, S40 1LP.

If our documents are not accessible to you, you can request a different format here.
Discretionary Housing Payment claim form PDF (PDF 493 KB)

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Last updated on 04 January 2024