Overpayment of benefits

What to do if you have received paperwork advising you of an overpayment of benefit.

Immigration Service Providers

  • check your housing benefit award
  • if you have an ongoing claim, this will be deducted from your award and therefore you rent will have a shortfall
  • this could result in rent arrears if your housing benefit is paid directly to your landlord
  • payment plans can be negotiated if you are no longer claiming housing benefit

Tax credits overpayment

  • it is important to tell HM Revenues and Customs about any change in your circumstances to avoid an overpayment
  • repayment plans can be made
  • overpayments may be deducted from an ongoing claim

Department of Work and Pensions (DWP)

  • tell the DWP about any change in your circumstances
  • answer any letters about your overpayment promptly
  • your benefit could be suspended or stopped
  • negotiate a repayment plan.

Further information

If you claim Universal Credit arrears with HMRC and overpayments of other benefits will be deducted from your UC claim instead. These deductions can be higher and you will have between 15% to 25% of your personal allowance deducted to repay these debts.

If this causes you hardship you will need to contact the Debt Management Unit at Department for Work and Pensions [DWP] on 0800 916 0647 and ask for the recovery rate to be reduced.

Repay housing benefits