Housing Benefit Overpayments

Direct Earnings Attachment

We may ask employers to deduct any Housing Benefit overpayments an employee owes the council from their pay. This is called a Direct Earnings Attachment. Employers are required to make deductions from the salary of their employees and the amounts deducted are then paid over to the Council to reduce or clear the debt. The law allows us to do this without applying to a Civil Court.

If an employee is affected we will inform them in writing. We will write to the employer and ask them to operate the scheme. 

The employers guide provides advice on what an employer needs to do if they are asked to carry out a Direct Earnings Attachment. It explains:

  • how to operate a Direct Earnings Attachment

  • how to work out how much should be deducted from the employees earnings

  • how and when to make payments to the Council of the amount deducted

  • employer's responsibilities under the law

The full procedure is explained in the employers guide. The guide is intended to help an employer understand the main points about Direct Earnings Attachments but it is not intended to be a full description or statement of the law. 

All documents in relation to DEA’s can be found in our downloads within the Overpaid Housing Benefit section .

Contact Benefits

Telephone: 01702 215001

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