Improvements have been made to the Universal Credit payment arrangement for private and social landlords by the Department for Work and Pensions, easing the infamously tricky legislation.
On 11 April 2017, the Department for Work and Pensions brought in improvements to the Alternative Payment Arrangement UC47 applications forms. This has now removed the need for landlords to provide additional evidence. Private Landlords and registered social landlords are now able to request a Managed Payment to Landlord Alternative Payment Arrangement and or repayment of rent arrears, by email using the improved UC47 Secure or the UC47 Non-Secure Alternative Payment Arrangement request forms. They can also be requested by post using the UC47 Secure form.
The improvements mean that the Alternative Payment Arrangement application forms have been altered to now incorporate all relevant information required to inform a Managed Payment to Landlord Alternative Payment Arrangement decision, removing the troublesome need need for landlords to provide additional evidence.
Furthermore, the UC47 Secure form now has a free text box to enable landlords to give reasons for a Managed Payment to Landlord Alternative Payment Arrangement request other than rent arrears. These could include instances where the tenant has drug or alcohol dependency issues, or other complex factors inhibiting their ability to manage their finances.
The forms also now include a disclaimer for landlords to sign. The Department for Work and Pensions say this is to ensure that landlords have read and understood the criteria for requesting a Managed Payment to Landlord Alternative Payment Arrangement, or recovery of rent arrears. This can be found in the found in the Personal Budgeting Support and Alternative Payment Arrangement guidance. It also ensures that landlords are fully aware of their responsibility to notify Universal Credit of any changes in the tenancy, such as the tenant moving out, rental amount increasing or decreasing or rental arrears being repaid.