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When everyone has a home

028 9024 5640: Housing & Debt Helpline for Northern Ireland

Benefits

The Cliff Edge Coalition is once again urgently calling for legislation to be passed to extend the welfare reform mitigations package. Without new legislation, mitigations will end in March 2021.The Coalition is further calling for this legislation to close loopholes in the existing arrangements which have left thousands unprotected from the benefit cap and bedroom tax. 

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Benefits, Welfare Reform

The UK think tank Resolution Foundation has produced a number of essential reports on the Covid-19 crisis over the past 9 months, including the most recent report focused on the necessity of reforming Statutory Sick Pay to support the Covid-19 recovery phase.

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Benefits, Coronavirus, Research, Affordability

BBC News NI reported last week on system failures within Universal Credit that have left some local tenants in rent arrears.  We’d encourage anyone who has fallen behind on their housing payments to get advice urgently, regardless of the reasons for missed payments. 

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Benefits, Social Tenancies, Private Tenancies, Welfare Reform

Over 126,000 people in Northern Ireland were claiming Universal Credit on 26 April 2020, an increase of 80% from the figure of 70,000 claimants just 8 weeks earlier on 1 March, according to recently released information from the Department for Communities. The number of applications during that 8-week period totalled 65,700.

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Benefits, Coronavirus, Welfare Reform

Land & Property Services has advised that its online rate rebate portal is unavailable between Monday 4 May and Monday 11 May. This is an annual occurence to allow for the uprating of claims.

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Benefits, Affordability

In the past year over 100 member organisations involved in the Cliff Edge Coalition have been urgently calling for welfare mitigations to be extended beyond 31st March 2020 and strengthened to take account of the new challenges such as Universal Credit, including the two-child limit, and cuts to housing benefits in the private rented sector.

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Benefits, Welfare Reform

How the Assembly can deal with housing problems created by Covid-19

This briefing paper details the ways in which we foresee Covid-19 and associated economic fallout impacting on homelessness and housing in Northern Ireland. It includes measures which we believe Government can take to cushion some of the worst impacts and help vulnerable people at this unique and troubling time. 

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Benefits, Social Tenancies, Private Tenancies, Welfare Reform, Homelessness

When Universal Credit was introduced, our advisers worried that well-established principles covering complex areas of housing benefit law would not be ported across to the new regime. One particular area of concern was the provisions which allow a claim for assistance with housing costs to be disallowed where the decision maker suspects that the claim has been contrived in order to take advantage of the benefits system.

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Benefits, Private Tenancies, Practical tips, Adviser

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