An overpayment of Housing Benefit is when we pay you or your landlord an amount of Housing Benefit that you were not entitled to receive.

An overpayment often occurs if you have not told us about a change in your circumstances. You must tell us about any changes to your circumstances and not rely on others to do it for you. Even if you have already told the Department for Works and Pensions (DWP), you must still tell us.

If you reported a change to us and we didn’t act on it in time, we will not ask you to repay this.

You will receive a notification each time your Housing Benefit entitlement changes. If you notice a mistake, please contact us immediately.

You can contact us by phone on 01474 337340 or email us at

Appealing an overpayment

If you disagree with an overpayment, you can put in an appeal within one calendar month from the date you were notified. Include details of your objections and the reasons for your appeal in writing with any supporting evidence. Appeals need to be put in writing either by post or by email to

Repaying the overpayment

There are many ways you can repay your Housing Benefit:

  • From your ongoing Housing Benefit entitlement at a weekly rate of £13.65 or £22.75 weekly for fraudulent overpayments, unless we’ve agreed an alternative amount with you.
  • If you are no longer receiving Housing Benefit, you will be sent an invoice for the debt to be paid in full.
  • If you are unable to repay the amount in full, you will need to contact us to discuss a payment plan.

Ways to pay

  • Direct debit on either the 3rd or 21st of each month, you will need to contact us to provide your bank details.
  • Standing order on any day of your choosing, 30-93-60, 54599860, Gravesham Borough Council, (your 6 digit invoice number will be your reference).
  • Online (you will need your 6 digit invoice number).
  • Telephone: 01474 337788, option 5 (you will need your 6 digit invoice number).
  • At any PayPoint or Post Office using your original invoice.
  • Recurring Card Payment – please contact us to set this up.

If you don’t pay

If you have not paid in full or contacted us to make an arrangement, we will issue a reminder notice.

If you have still not paid, we will recover the debt using other methods:

  • Attaching to your Department for Works and Pensions benefits.
  • Direct Earnings Attachment – deducting directly from your earnings based on a set percentage depending on how much you earn.
  • Referring you to our enforcement agency to collect the debt.

Applying for court action to be taken against you at either the County or High Court.

Overpayments policy

Read our overpayments policy