Privacy Notice for Benefits Service

Privacy Notice for Benefits Service

Information about the Council’s Privacy Notice for Benefits Service.

The privacy notice is to be read in conjunction with the full Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea fair processing notice.

What are the purposes of processing your personal information?

Personal information is processed in order to work out and award your Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction and for recovering any money owed to the council under the:

  • Administration of the Council Tax Reduction Scheme under S13A and Schedule 1a of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 and associated Regulations
  • Administration of the Social Security Administration Act 1992
  • Administration of Housing Benefit under the Housing Benefit Regulations 2006 and associated Regulations
  • Administration of Discretionary Housing Payments under the Discretionary Financial Assistance Regulations 2001 and associated Regulations

What type of information is collected?

As part of the benefits administration and recovery process, the Council will collect certain information where appropriate.

This information collected may include:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Telephone number
  • Email address
  • Date of birth
  • National Insurance number
  • Details of occupancy or tenancy information
  • Details of income from earnings, benefits, pension, savings, and any capital for residents in the household

Who processes the information?

The Benefits Section that is part of the Council’s Customer Access Department is responsible for processing the information outlined in this notice. All personal data held is processed in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018.

Civica UK Ltd is the company contracted by the council to process benefits information and undertakes this function as the council’s Data Processor.

How is the information used?

We will use it (where applicable) to:

  • Determine who is entitled to receive council tax reduction and/or housing benefit and for what period(s)
  • Administer, recover and grant awards of council tax reduction and/or housing benefit
  • Comply with legal obligations, for example the prevention and/or detection of crime including fraud
  • Protect public funds

What is the legal basis for processing your information?

Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction are means tested welfare benefits processed under the following Act:

  • Social Security and Benefits Act 1992

Under the above act there are two regulations that help its operation:

  • Housing Benefit Regulations 2006 for working age claimants and the Housing Benefit (Persons who have attained the qualifying age for state pension credit) Regulations 2006 for those of pension age
  • For Council Tax Reduction Schemes it is the Local Government Finance Act 2012 Section 10

Who may we share your information with?

We may share information with other council departments that include Council Tax, Adult Social Care and Local Support Payments, local authorities, government departments housing providers and agencies for the detection, prevention and prosecution of fraud and criminal activity. Examples of such agencies include the Police and HM Revenues and Customs.

We may also share information, where necessary, for:

  • Performing our statutory duties, for example, Magistrates Courts and enforcement agents
  • Making any disclosures required by law
  • Assisting bodies responsible for: auditing or administering public funds, maintaining public safety, mitigating risk of harm and assisting in emergencies

Where it is necessary to allow a third party working on behalf of the Council and/or to provide services to you. The information you provide us may be shared with the Department of Work and Pensions, (DWP) and HMRC to assist us calculating your entitlement and DSI Billing to send out council tax reduction and housing benefit notification letters.

How long do we keep your records?

We will only keep your information for the minimum period necessary. The information outlined in this privacy notice will be kept for the period required by the council for legal and audit purposes. All information will be held securely and destroyed under confidential conditions.

Your rights

The Data Protection Act 2018 allows you to find out what information is held about you, on paper and computer records. This is known as ‘right of subject access’ and applies to your Housing Benefit records along with all other personal records. Details of how to obtain a copy of your records can be found on the Subject Access Requests page.

You are entitled to receive a copy of your records free of charge within 30 calendar days. In certain circumstances, access to your records may be limited, for example, if the records you have asked for contain information relating to another person.

The GDPR and Data Protection Act 2018 allows you other right; for example, if there is an error in your records you have the right to make sure it is rectified or erased. Please email: [email protected] with any request or query regarding these rights.

If you are  dissatisfied with how the Council has used your personal information you should in the first instance email the council’s Data Protection Officer at: [email protected]. Should you continue to be dissatisfied with the council’s response you have a right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office at: [email protected].

Changes in your circumstances

You must notify us immediately if there are any changes in your circumstances and personal details so we can maintain an accurate and up to date record of your information.

Contact details of data controller

Name: Head of Revenues and Benefits

  • Email: [email protected]
  • Telephone: 020 7361 3006
  • Address: Revenues and Benefits, 3rd Floor, Town Hall, Hornton Street, London, W8 7NX

Last updated: 29 November 2019