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Yet another MAC question

HarlowAC
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My Client under pension age has just become part of a couple. Other partner is over pension age.
My client was getting IRESA and HB/CTR. Also gets DLA
HB has been reassessed and awarded on a pension age basis.

But HB guidance says

Existing single HB claimants
8. An existing HB claimant who is single and over pension age but who subsequently forms a new relationship with someone under pension age, will lose their entitlement to HB. The couple should be advised to claim UC. This also applies to an existing claimant who is under pension age and forms a new relationship with someone who is over pension age. The relevant provision is Article 6(2)(a) and (3)(a) of SI 2019/37. See additional operational guidance at Annex A for more information about when to close the claim.

So I’m a bit confused about whether HB should be in payment.

Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Afraid not, HB award should have terminated.

See this example from Guidance
A3/2019 Mixed age couples: changes to entitlement conditions from 15 May 2019

Single pensioners who form a mixed age couple
8. If a single pensioner forms a couple with a person below the qualifying age on or after 15 May 2019, entitlement to pension age Housing Benefit and Pension Credit will end.

Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Sorry just seen you put the explanation from this Guidance
A9/2019 Mixed age couples: further guidance (revised)

Same answer as above though.

Charles
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Are you sure the HB has been reassessed under the SPC rules?

As she has IRESA, the HB can stay live but under the working age rules.

HarlowAC
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Yes.

Applicable amount says couple of pensionable age £324.70

seand
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Sorry, but I think Paul is answering as if it is the pension age partner who is the HB claimant.

Isn’t it the younger claimant who was getting HB along with irESA? If they are still entitled to some irESA while in a mixed age couple, then I would say that they are entitled to HB as well. It should be working age HB though?

If irESA entitlement has ended, I would agree that HB entitlement should also end

HarlowAC
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IRESA has ended.

Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Charles - 30 November 2023 02:29 PM

Are you sure the HB has been reassessed under the SPC rules?

As she has IRESA, the HB can stay live but under the working age rules.

Aha, I think you might be correct.

I thought art.6(2)(a) would bite as that deals with single claimants becoming MAC and awards of both working-age pension-age HB awards terminate as such, but that the “awards are those where entitlement under the Housing Benefit SPC Regulations as part of a mixed-age couple begins on or after the appointed day and of course,  because of the ESA award, any HB award couldn’t be made under the SPC Regs due to reg.5.

Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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HarlowAC - 30 November 2023 02:34 PM

IRESA has ended.

Blimey, difficult to keep up with this.

As such, then HB award should end as I said before as far as I can see.

HarlowAC
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Blimey, difficult to keep up with this.

Indeed!

So are well all agreed HB should not be in payment?

HB Anorak
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It looks as if their income is sufficient to float them off ESA(ir) - you’ll be able to tell if that’s the case from the HB calculation (the applicable amount for ESA will be £20-odd lower for dreary reasons associated with savings credit and cliff edges).  So if the pension income plus maybe ESA(c) exceeds the HB applicable amount, it will for sure exceed the ESA(ir) applicable amount also, meaning that HB is not administered under the working age regs and should have terminated.

HarlowAC
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Yes SRP and an Occ P takes them out of entitlement to IRESA.
I’ll give them the bad news!