The department has launched the system today in partnership with UK firm Caridon Landlord Systems, enabling landlords and tenants to apply online for the housing element of Universal Credit to be paid direct.
The Department for Works and Pensions (DWP) has launched an online platform that enables landlords to apply online for housing benefit to be paid directly to them.
This system, which has been under development for many months, means landlords can organise Alternative Payment Arrangements (APAs) online instead of using the notoriously complicated UC47 forms, which can take hours to fill in and up to three weeks to be processed.
APAs are for claimants who cannot manage their single monthly payment and where there is a risk of financial harm to the claimant or their family.
The new system cannot come soon enough for some landlords, who have become increasingly exasperated that DWP case managers often fail to respond directly to landlords about claims.
Developed in partnership with Croydon-based Caridon Landlord Solutions, the new system provides landlords and tenants with a much simpler tool to request that the housing element of UC is paid direct to a landlord.
As LandlordZONE has reported on many occasions in the past, the old paper-based UC47 forms have been criticised for being difficult to fill in, taking weeks to process and that, often, applications simply disappeared down administrational rabbit holes after arriving at the DWP.
“Given how stretched DWP’s resources are as a result of the pandemic, it is fantastic that they have managed to launch this important improvement to the system which will help those struggling to manage their finances,” says Sherrelle Collman, MD of Caridon.
Her company, which is a specialist UC consultancy for landlords, says it will be working with its clients in the coming days and weeks to get them set up on the new system.