Northumberland County Council > Housing > Housing benefit > Housing and Council Tax Benefi

Housing Benefit Service Standards

Northumberland County Council is committed to providing a high quality Benefits Service that is based upon and responsive to the needs of all our customers

Benefit Service Standardsservice standards


Northumberland County Council is committed to providing a
high quality Benefits Service that is based upon and responsive
to the needs of all our customers.


The Benefit Service mission statement is:

'To provide a high quality and efficient benefit service that meets the expectations of the residents of Northumberland'



Service Aims

The overall aim of the service is to provide a very good high quality service to the Council, its partners and the community. More specifically, we aim to:-

  • Ensure the service is modern, efficient and providing value for money.
  • Design the service in line with the needs and expectations of our customers.
  • Assess benefit claims in an accurate and timely manner and minimise benefit overpayments.
  • Ensure the service is accessible to everyone in the community by promoting our service and developing community links and partnerships.
  • Minimise the barriers to work by improving access and the information available to our customers and work closely with external partners in order to maximise benefit take up and improve processing performance.
  • To develop procedures to detect and minimise fraudulent claims for benefit.
  • To develop a robust but fair overpayment recovery procedure in line with the Council's Overpayment Policy and maximise potential income to the service.


Service Standards

The standards of service we aim to provide to all of our customers are detailed below. They will be reviewed and updated (if necessary) on an annual basis:

We aim to:




  • Reply to complaints within in line with the Council’s Complaints procedure;
  • 2013/2014 Qtr 4 =  No data available at present 


We will also:
  • Keep our website up to date with the latest information and any legislative changes;
  • Provide a range of leaflets on our website and customer service points;
  • Promote the take-up of benefit;
  • Maximise benefit payments for residents;
  • Provide accurate information and advice;
  • Use feedback to make continuous improvements to our service;
  • Aim to notify customers in writing of any changes to their benefit within 5 working days;
  • Provide advice and sign post customers so that they may obtain further advice regarding any other benefits they may be entitled to;
  • Make alternative arrangements if you are unable to visit our offices;
  • Provide support to people if required (e.g. help with completing forms)
  • Contact you (where possible) in advance of visiting you at home and our staff will explain who they are and the purpose of their visit; and
  • Ensure our leaflets are in plain English.


Contact DetailsIRRV

Benefit Section

Wansbeck Square



NE63 9XL

Telephone: 0845 600 6400

The council now offers nine local area code telephone numbers for customers to use when calling the central contact centre.  For more details about the numbers, along with frequently asked questions, please click here.