The new rules will limit this period to only three months. The maximum period of time that an award can be backdated will be reduced from a year to only six months for anyone else who can show good cause for not claiming Housing Benefit or Council Tax Benefit earlier.
Councillor Bill Brady, Lead Member for Equality and Diversity, said: "It is vital that those who are entitled to these benefits do not delay and put in claims now to avoid losing out on money that is rightfully theirs.
South Tyneside Council is urging Borough residents to act now and ensure they claim the benefits they are entitled to before Government rule changes come into force.
From 6th October, the Government is introducing new legislation in the backdating of awards.
Any gap in good cause will mean your benefit will not be backdated.
You must apply in writing to the council to have your benefit backdated and your request should include the following: Remember, the council will only backdate your benefit up to 6 months from the date you ask for backdating, not necessarily from the date you put your claim form in.
It is based on the social insurance (PRSI) record of either the claimant or their late spouse or civil partner.