Discretionary housing payment legislation and guidance | CPAG

Discretionary housing payment legislation and guidance

Date: 
12 December 2019

Discretionary housing payments have been devolved, but at present the existing law applies in Scotland. This will eventually change, as there will be new rules set by part 5 the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018.

The basic rules for the discretionary housing payment scheme are set by section 69 of the Child Support, Pensions and Social Security Act 2000.

Read the Child Support, Pensions and Social Security Act 2000.

More detail is set out in the Discretionary Financial Assistance Regulations 2001.

Read the Discretionary Financial Assistance Regulations 2001.

The DWP has also published good practice guidance for local authorities administering discretionary housing payments. Even though this says that it only applies to England and Wales, no Scottish guidance has yet been produced to replace it, so it seems that local authorities will still be using it unless they have introduced their own guidance documents.

Read the Discretionary Housing Payments guidance manual: August 2019.

The main difference in Scotland is that the Scottish Government will fully reimburse local authorities for any discretionary housing payments made to mitigate the effect of the ‘bedroom tax’, or under occupancy charge for council and housing association tenants.

Read more about discretionary housing payments in Scotland.