Tuesday, 17 November 2009

CAB Christmas Newsletter December 2009

A very Happy Christmas to all our readers, from Thame Citizens Advice Bureau!

Christmas is a time for family and for celebrations. For many 2009 has been a hard year and lots of us may feel relieved if we have reached the end of it with our jobs and bank balances intact! So it’s a relief to have a piece of good news, which will help some families balance those Christmas budgets.

More families with children will now be able to get help towards paying their rent, thanks to new changes to benefit rules. Parents who receive Child Benefit and rent their homes but who at present get no housing benefit should check their entitlement again.

Thame CAB has worked out that a single parent with two children, for example, who previously just missed out on getting any help towards paying the rent could now be entitled to housing benefit of up to £21.58 a week.

The rule change also means some parents already receiving housing benefit will automatically see the amount they are entitled to go up, and more people will also become eligible for help in paying their council tax bills.

The extra money will be available to help all tenants with children, whether they live in council housing, housing association property, or private rented accommodation.

It comes about because from Monday 2 November income from child benefit will no longer be taken into account when it comes to calculating entitlement to housing benefit and council tax benefit.

So let’s all enjoy spending time with family and friends this Christmas and make the holiday period a break from the pressures of our ordinary working lives.

A happy and healthy 2010 to you all.