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Backdating - Working Age

Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support will normally start from the Monday following the date the claim form was issued if received by the Council within one calendar month. If it is not received by the Council within this time then it will commence from the Monday following the date of receipt in the office.

Backdating only applies to working-age claimants.

If you want to claim Housing Benefit or Council Tax Support for a past period then it will only be considered if you have special circumstances that have existed continuously during the period of backdating, up to the date you make your request.  This is known as 'continuous good cause'.

From 1 April 2016 Housing Benefit can only be backdated one month, counting back from the date your request is received by Teignbridge Benefit Services.

Council Tax Support can be backdated 6 months counting back from the date your request is received by Teignbridge Benefit Services.

Following are some examples of what might be considered as 'continuous good cause':

  • Serious ill health and there was no one available to help you
  • Physical or mental disabilities that prevented you from making your claim on time and there was no one  available to help you
  • Foreign language difficulties
  • Misleading advice from an official source
  • A recent change in the law which meant that you could not have known of your right to make a claim


You should make any request for backdating as early as possible and it must be in writing.  You may be required to supply evidence to support your reason for the delay.  You can write a letter or use this form to make your request. pdf icon Backdate Housing Benefit Request Form [39kb]

Backdating can only be awarded if the reason you give shows that you were unable to make a claim at an earlier date and that the reason existed continuously throughout the whole period, up to the date you made your request.