Housing Benefit will only be backdated up to a maximum of 4 weeks from April 2016. To avoid having to make a backdated claim for Housing Benefit and losing out on help with your rent make sure you:
Make a claim for Housing Benefit as soon as your circumstances change e.g. if your income reduces or if you are no longer working.
If you are already claiming Housing Benefit and you have a change in your circumstances, make sure you notify Housing Benefit immediately and provide all of the requested evidence within the timescales provided. That way you can avoid your claim being cancelled and needing to make a new claim.
If you get benefits, you may be aware of changes that have affected you since April 2013.
Further major changes are due, which will affect everyone who claims benefits, with the introduction of Universal Credit.
UPDATE: Child Tax Credit Changes
From April 2017 support provided through Child Tax Credit will be limited to only 2 children. So any subsequent children born after April 2017 will not be eligible for further support. Universal Credit will also be limited to only 2 children in the same way.