Why do you need my information?

The information we collect and the information provided to us by the Department for Work and Pensions is required for the calculation of your Housing Benefit and/ or Council Tax Support claim.

  • We use the information in order to administer Housing Benefit under the Housing Benefit Regulations 2006 and associated Regulations.
  • We use the information in order to administer our Council Tax Support scheme under the Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Prescribed Requirements) (England) Regulations 2012.
  • We will use the information to make you liable (if appropriate) for Council Tax at your address.
  • We may use your information to help collect debts like Council Tax.
  • We may use the information held to assist in the recovery of Housing Benefit Overpayments.
  • We have a duty to protect public funds we administer and may use information held about you for all lawful purposes, including and not limited to the prevention and detection of fraud, matching council tax data with electoral registration records and protecting public funds in investigating misuse of public money.
  • In order to calculate Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support we collect information about you, your partner, your children and other adults that live in your household.

What type of information is collected from me?

In order to administer our services we collect the following information from you:

  • name
  • address
  • date of birth
  • national insurance number
  • earned income
  • benefits and allowances
  • bank accounts 
  • savings
  • investments
  • property ownership
  • rent paid
  • landlord details
  • immigration details

We may also collect information about your partner, your children and other adults that live in your household.

Who will my information be shared with?

Your information may be shared with:

  • Public agencies, government departments and other organisations, in relation to welfare benefit claim. This may include:-
  • Other council services to check or prove your entitlement to other benefits, grants or services that you may be entitled to receive
    • The Department for Work and Pensions
    • Her Majesty’s Revenues and Customs
    • The Appeals Service
    • The Valuation Tribunal
    • Ombudsman and regulatory authorities
    • Law enforcement and prosecuting authorities
    • Debt collection and tracing agents working on the council’s behalf – to assist in the recovery of housing benefit overpayments. Other bodies, where the law allows this, for the purposes of preventing or detecting fraud.
    •  The Council participates in fraud initiatives, including the National Fraud Initiative (NFI) and may verify the data we hold with other organisations, including but not limited to, the Department of Work Pensions and HMRC. For more information on the National Fraud Initiative visit (link)
    • Limited information may be shared with your landlord where your housing benefit is being paid direct to them – we will only tell your landlord how much housing benefit you are receiving and when this will be paid to them
    • Other people, or organisations/agencies, you have given us consent to share information with. This may include appointees, Members of Parliament and local Councillors.

Do I have to provide the information requested and what will happen if I don't?

If you do not provide the information requested, we will not be able to provide support to you.

If you are receiving Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Support, you must tell us of any changes that may affect your eligibility and/or the amount you are receiving within one month.

If you do not tell us about changes, you may be subject to further proceedings, including prosecution and you will have to pay back any amounts that have been overpaid.

How long will you keep my data?

We only hold information as long as it is needed or required by law and then dispose of it securely.

How will my information be stored?

Your information will be stored in line with our information security guidelines

Will my information be transferred abroad?

No

What are my rights?

You have the right to:

  • access the personal information we hold about you. Any access requests are free of charge.
  • have information corrected, if the information we hold about you is inaccurate.
  • request completion of incomplete data.
  • ask us to erase your personal data in certain circumstances (‘right to be forgotten’).
  • ask us to stop or restrict the processing of your personal data, in certain circumstances. Where possible, we will seek to comply with your request, but we may need to hold or process information to comply with a legal requirement.