Senior Assessor (Housing, Benefits and Planning) – Teignbridge – 1382



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    1382 - Senior Assessor (Housing, Benefits and Planning)

Job Description

Purpose of the role To provide support and assistance to Teignbridge residents who are on low income with payment of their rent and Council Tax, by promptly and accurately assessing and maintaining awards for Housing Benefit, Council Tax Reduction and quality checking claims to ensure the awards are made in line with current legislation, policies and procedures. 2. Key duties and responsibilities a. Promptly and accurately assessing and maintaining awards in respect of Housing Benefits, Council Tax Reduction and Discretionary Housing Payments and Council Tax Discretionary Discount awards in accordance with current benefit legislation and council policies and procedures. b. Dealing with complex cases to include Self Employed, Students, Persons’ from Abroad and specified accommodation. c. Appropriately accessing and using all available internal and external data systems in order to determine a customers’ entitlements. d. Assist with the processing of any work arising from National Fraud Initiatives, Department for Work and Pensions data sharing initiatives, for example ATLAS, HBAA, VEP, HBMS, NFI. e. Ensuring that customers and all other persons affected are notified of all decisions made and given the appropriate dispute rights. f. Dealing with disputes, reconsiderations, appeals and backdated claims and complaints in accordance with the regulations and local procedures. g. Ensuring that Housing Benefit overpayments are correct and appropriate recovery action arranged in accordance with the current benefit legislation and council policies and procedures. h. Ensuring that Council Tax Reduction adjustments are correct and managing the impact of them on the Council Tax Account. i. Maintaining a customers’ council tax account and liabilities. j. Maintaining, reviewing and checking the calculation of awards to ensure accurate data input in accordance with current legislation, policies and procedures and promptly recording the outcome of these checks. k. Balance quality against quantity, whilst maintaining a low error rate. l. Communicating with customers in person, by letter, electronically and by phone, answering all enquiries concerning benefits and awards m. Updating the revenue and benefit web pages, leaflets, letters, forms and procedures as required by the Team Leader. n. Assisting with the preparation of appeal files to the required standard for submission to the Tribunal Service. o. Attending as the Council’s representative, appropriate tribunal, seminars, conferences, working parties and partnership groups as and when required. p. Assisting the Team Leader with the running of the Team and the day-to-day mentoring and training of the revenue, benefit and customer support staff. q. Checking and being alert for possible fraudulent claims and referring these cases to the Fraud and Compliance Officer, then assessing fraud cases in accordance with the benefit legislation. r. Liaising with internal and external partners, agencies and organisations including central and local government, landlords’ agents, housing associations, voluntary and private sector and internal departments. s. Any other task commensurate with the grade of this post. 3. Supervision The detailed work plan, guidelines and targets have been set within the Service Plan and the Contract requirements, which have been agreed by Members, strategic managers and senior management. The post-holder assists in ensuring that work is undertaken efficiently and in the agreed manner, controlling work priorities on a daily basis giving due regard to the current circumstances, priorities and workload of the team. Regular meetings with the Team Leader take place where changes to working practices, legislation and priorities are discussed. Qualifications and knowledge 1. Minimum Maths and English GSCE at grade 5 or equivalent. IRRV qualification at Technician level Application and document check. 2. Sound knowledge of Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction legislation. 3. IT systems such as Microsoft Office, processing and document management systems. 4. Data Protection legislation Experience 5. Working in an administrative or office environment. 6. Dealing with complex and advanced technical work to include 7. Self Employed, Students, Persons From Abroad 8. Reconsiderations and Appeals. 9. Backdating decisions 10. Discretionary Housing Payments and Council Tax Discretionary awards 11. Overpayments including underlying entitlement • Specified accommodation cases and decision making. Application / interview Skills and abilities 12. Robust understanding and interpretation of legislation. 13. Strong verbal, written and electronic communication skills at all levels. 14. Work under pressure to accurate standards, deadlines and targets. 15. Deliver excellent customer service in line with the council’s expectations. 16. Ability to be both flexible and adaptable, especially in a service that is constantly changing and evolving. 17. Proactively work on own initiative. 18. Whilst being part of a team. 19. Open to change and new initiatives.

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