Assessments Officer (Housing Benefits & Planning

Job Type:
Job Sector:
Admin, Secretarial
Salary Description:
£16.06 - £16.86 p hour
Job Ref:

Job Purpose: 1. To assist customers by accurately determining their entitlement to Housing Benefit, Council Tax Support, Local Welfare Assistance, Social Care financial assistance and concessionary travel 2. To provide first contact resolution to customers across a range of services and a variety of access channels, maintaining the highest standard of customer care at all times. 3. To carry out all duties in accordance with relevant legislation and guidance, Council policies, procedures and standards to ensure the delivery of excellent services to customers Principal Accountabilities and Responsibilities: 1. Asses, review or reconsider entitlement to Housing Benefit, Council Tax Support, Social Care financial assistance or concessionary travel, in accordance with the current legislation and within targeted timescales, and via a variety of access channels. Check submitted forms and documentation and where necessary request further evidence in order to determine customers' Benefit entitlement. 2. Do everything possible to resolve customer contact at the first point of contact ensuring that customers receive a high quality service. 3. Effectively resolve all claim types for customers by liaising with customers and their representatives, landlords, and other internal and external stakeholders including (but not limited to); The Department for Work and Pensions, Her Majesty's Revenue & Customs, Housing Department, Council Tax and Adult Social Care Team. 4. Consider and determine applications for Discretionary Housing Payments and Local Welfare Assistance in line with Council policy and guidance. Carry out Benefits functions in relation to Universal Credit (administered by the DWP). 5. Accurately assess entitlement to Benefits and other forms of assistance by maintaining an extensive and up to date knowledge of the relevant IT systems, policy and procedures, regulations, case law and other associated welfare benefits 6. Input and amend claims from Housing Benefit Matching Service (HBMS) and Real Time Information (RTI) referrals (i.e. able to identify discrepancies and interpret data received from DWP and HMRC, identify correct codes, and able to make decisions on the outcome of HBMS). 7. Maintain a detailed knowledge of Housing Benefit legislation, Council Tax Reduction / Support (local scheme), understanding of benefit subsidy issues and knowledge of other welfare benefits. To have an understanding of different tenancy types and related issues with regards to Housing Benefit entitlement. To make referrals to the Rent Service as appropriate. 8. Identify, classify and take the necessary action with regards to overpayments of Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support and Adult Social Care financial assistance in accordance with appropriate Council policies and regulations taking the appropriate recovery action, optimising income maximisation at all times. 9. To undertake enquiries concerning entitlement to other welfare benefits using the link with the DWP Customer Information System. 10.Undertake more complex benefit cases which include investigating and resolving customer disputes, considering backdating requests, deprivation/diminishing of capital cases, students, directors of limited companies etc 11.Make amendments to Council Tax accounts including opening and closing accounts, awarding and removing discounts and other transactions. 12.Identify, refer and record potentially fraudulent cases to the Single Fraud Investigation Services and or Internal Audit and Investigations section. 13.Undertake home visits to customers in relation to benefits, social care financial assessments or independent travel, if required. 14.Make a valuable contribution to the effectiveness and continued improvement and success of the service by regularly contributing ideas, suggestions and feedback to the Team Leader and at appropriate meetings or workshops. 15.Safeguarding is everyone's responsibility and all employees are required to act in such a way that at all times safeguards the health and well-being of children and vulnerable adults. 16.Carry out duties with due regard to the Council's Customer Care, Equal Opportunities, Information Governance, Data Protection and Health and Safety policies and procedures. 17.Undertake any other duties commensurate with the general level of responsibility of this post. Person Specification Job Knowledge, Skills & Experience: Specify the qualifications, experience, skills and abilities required. Knowledge and Experience: 1. Knowledge and experience of providing a customer focussed advice, information, enquiry, transactions and complaints handling in a demanding customer facing environment across various access channels (face to face, telephone, post and online) 2. An understanding of Housing Benefits, Council Tax Support, Council Tax and Social Care Financial Assessments 3. Excellent knowledge of Microsoft Outlook, Excel and Word packages and the ability to effectively use a range of IT systems and applications.

Contact Details:
Tel: not in use
Contact: Kris Clare

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