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Welfare Reform 14 October 2013. Employment Support Allowance (The sickness benefit) ESA: 2 Types Contributory and Income related May 2012 Contrib ESA.

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Presentation on theme: "Welfare Reform 14 October 2013. Employment Support Allowance (The sickness benefit) ESA: 2 Types Contributory and Income related May 2012 Contrib ESA."— Presentation transcript:

1 Welfare Reform 14 October 2013

2 Employment Support Allowance (The sickness benefit) ESA: 2 Types Contributory and Income related May 2012 Contrib ESA limited to 1yr for those in work related activity group (70% of contrib esa claimants) Monies stopped but still unfit May be able to claim (ir)ESA but problems for certain claimants ie couples were one works

3 Employment Support Allowance 3 Dec 2012: Sanctions Applies all claimants in work related activity group regardless of type of ESA (70% of claimants) Fails to take part in work focused interviews or undertake work related activity (without good cause) Penalty: loss of £71.70 pr week for as long as don’t participate plus 1, 2 or 4wk addition Possibility of hardship payments in limited circs

4 Employment and Support Allowance Sanctions Appeal 1 month from date of decision to lodge appeal Can be up to 12 months later but need to show good cause Housing Benefit Should continue to receive Housing Benefit during sanction period

5 Jobseekers Allowance Oct 2012: Sanctions 3 types: Low, intermediate or high Fail to attend an adviser interview or not actively seeking employment or leaving a job voluntarily without good cause 4, 13, 26 or 156 weeks Loss of all monies Hardship payments can be claimed (discretionary and not paid for first 14days unless in vulnerable group)

6 Jobseekers Allowance Sanction Appeals 1 month Can be up to 12 months later but need to show good cause Housing Benefit Should still be paid during sanction however often issues ( HB Regs 2006 2 (3) (a)) (also nil income declaration)

7 Housing Benefit: Bedroom Tax April 2013: Social Sector: Size Restriction Entitlement for working age claimants reflect household size (16 – Pension Credit qualifying age) Size Criteria applies 1 spare bedroom 14% cut in rent allowed for HB 2 or more spare 25% reduction applied Options: Discretionary Housing Payment’s and/or Appeals

8 Housing Benefit Size Restrictions: Bedroom Tax 1 bedroom per Adult couple Any other adult aged 16 or over Any 2 children of same sex under 16 Any 2 children regardless of sex under 10 Any other children Foster children* Disabled Child* Non resident carers*

9 Housing Benefit Size Restrictions: Bedroom Tax Carer Additional bedroom in size criteria for a non resident carer where the need for overnight care has been established and arranged Claimant or partner is on AA or DLA Care M or H rate or if not in receipt Can provide evidence to LA they require overnight care Only applies where HB claimant or partner need care

10 Housing Benefit Social Sector: Size Restriction No account taken of couples were one or both are disabled such that they cannot share a bedroom No account of properties were additional room for disability equipment No account taken of properties that have been disability adapted No account taken of children whose main residence is elsewhere

11 Housing Benefit: Appeals and Discretionary Housing Payments Intended to assist those who require further financial assistance with housing costs It’s a cash limited pot Large demand on cash so need to make the case that claimants situation a priority Priority given to disability, carers, moving into employment etc Usually awarded for limited period

12 Housing Benefit: Appeals Lodge 1 month (although have additional up to 12 months if good cause) Free representation Social Work Services Welfare Rights Appeals team and other orgs Appeal letter on council website Appeals have been won (ie Kirkcaldy, Glasgow)

13 Social Fund / Scottish Welfare Fund April 2013: Part of social fund abolished Comm Care Grants and elements of Crisis Loans Replaced by Scottish Welfare Fund (Comm Care Grants and Crisis Grants) Paid on same grounds as they were in discretionary social fund Sits in GCC (Grant Services Team 0141 276 1177) Can claim online

14 Social Fund Budgeting loans still exist Crisis loan (alignment loans) still exist now known as Short term Advances (waiting on payment of benefit) The Regulated Social Fund still exists All paid by the DWP

15 Disability Living Allowance/PIP DLA a pivotal benefit for income maximisation 10/6/2013 introduction of Personal Independence Payments as replacement for DLA (for adults) Tougher Test PIP has 2 components like DLA comprising Daily Living and Mobility Paid at 2 rates of each (standard and enhanced)

16 DLA/PIP New Assessment tool Similar to ESA: done on a points basis Activities – Tasks Descriptors – Measurement of ability Have problems over 50% of time No day/night time tests Very likely claimants will face consultation as part of assessment Winners and losers ie mobility criteria

17 Disability Living Allowance / Personal Independence Payments Transfer of existing DLA claimants in 2 runs 28 Oct 2013 Oct 2015 – Oct 2017 Claimants invited to claim PIP No automatic entitlement from DLA to PIP DLA ends if do not take up invite (8 wks) If DLA ends other bens can be badly affected i.e disability premium, severe disability prem, enhanced disability prem, HB non dep deductions

18 Personal Independence Payment Invitation to claim –DLA recipients will receive a letter and will be invited to claim PIP No response to invitation –After 4 weeks –DLA suspended No contact within 8 weeks of invitation –DLA award ended If a claim for Personal Independence Payment made –DLA continues in payment until PIP claim decided

19 Personal Independence Payment Who gets transferred in first run 28 Oct 2013 onwards Anyone whose existing DLA ward is scheduled to end from mid March 2014 onwards Anyone who reports a change of circumstances Oct 2015 – Oct 2017 All other eligible claimants (ie indefinite awards) No system announced for this

20 Benefit Cap Limit on what can be paid via benefit system £350 per wk single adults no children £500 per wk lone parent and couples with or without children Applies to combined income from JSA, IS, ESA, Incap Ben, SDA, HB, Child Ben, Child Tax Credit, Carers Allow, Widows Ben, Widowed Parents All, Bereavement Allow Initial deductions made from HB

21 Universal Credit Means tested (£6,000 - £16,000) People of working age (18 – Pen Credit qualify age) Replace IS, (ib) JSA, (ir) ESA, HB and both types of Tax credits Single Payment Paid monthly Administered by DWP Claim online

22 Universal Credit Basic Allowance Additions for children, disability*, caring and housing costs Monies for childcare costs System of earnings disregards Changes to non dep deductions for housing Strengthened sanction regime Timetable???

23 Change to Appeal Procedure Decisions made on or after 28 Oct 2013 Negative decision (all DWP bens except UC and PIP already introduced) 1 st step review request to DWP (1 month) Receive Mandatory reconsideration notice (no time limit for DWP to respond) 2 ND Step Lodge separate appeal with Courts and Tribunal Service (1 month)

24 Other Issues April 2011: Rates of Child Ben frozen for 3 yrs May 2012: Inc Support: L Parent child now under 5 Dec 2012: Ben rates to be increased by only 1% in next 3yrs April 2013: Abolition of Council Tax Ben creation of new scheme (£40m cut 1 st yr 8.5% cut in 2 nd year)

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