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Impact of Universal Credit Dr Phil Agulnik Entitledto 4 th October 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "Impact of Universal Credit Dr Phil Agulnik Entitledto 4 th October 2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 Impact of Universal Credit Dr Phil Agulnik Entitledto 4 th October 2012

2 An economist specialising in social security Before Entitledto I worked for DWP and other central govt. departments Entitledto supply a free public benefits calculator performing over 2 million calculations a year We provide a range of benefit calculators for local authorities, including self-service, adviser, and under occupation calculators Entitledto are an IRRV strategic partner I am…

3 What the Government says about Universal Credit Universal Credit is the Governments key reform to tackle the two key problems of poor work incentives; and complexity. It will enable the system to help people to move into and progress in work, while supporting the most vulnerable. It will be simple to understand and administer and it will protect both the welfare of those most in need and the public purse

4 The scope of Universal Credit In scope Income-based Jobseekers Allowance Income-related Employment and Support Allowance Income Support (including Support for Mortgage Interest) Child Tax Credit Working Tax Credit Housing Benefit Out of scope Council Tax support Disability Living Allowance Contributory Benefits State pension Child Benefit Pension Credit Carers Allowance

5 Structure of Universal Credit

6 The Means Test Step 1 - Calculate Maximum Amount Step 2 - Assess Capital, Unearned Income and Earned Income Step 3 - Taper reduces Maximum Amount - apply disregards - 65p in the £ taper on earned income - £ for £ taper on unearned income Step 4 - Adjustments - sanctions - benefits cap - transitional protection (for some)

7 Maximum Amount Standard Amount for single/couple plus Child Element Disabled Child Additions Childcare Element Carer Element Limited Capability for Work or Limited Capability for Work-Related Activity Element Housing Element Rent restriction through under-occupation rules Rent restriction through LHA rules Mortgage interest restrictions (or loan?) Non-dependant deduction(s) No housing element for supported/exempt accommodation

8 Income and capital Employed earnings - actual income during assessment period - real time earnings from HMRC Self-employed earnings - self-reported income during assessment period - minimum income floor Unearned income - prescribed in regulations - not prescribed = not treated as income - generally same income types disregarded as now, except for full disregard of war pension income All above calculated as a monthly figure Capital - no change for benefits, big change for tax credits

9 Assessing earnings – Real Time Information

10 Unearned Income Prescribed income (taken into account) includes: (a)Retirement pension (b)The following benefits: (i) contribution-based jobseekers allowance; (ii) employment and support allowance; (iii) carers allowance; (iv) bereavement allowance; (v) widowed mothers allowance; (vi) widowed parents allowance; (vii) widows pension; (viii) maternity allowance; (ix) foreign benefits (c) Spousal maintenance (d) Student income (e) Etc etc

11 Earnings disregards (may change) Plus 100% of pension contributions disregarded!

12 Transitional Protection Three kinds of claim for UC: 1.New claim, e.g. when someone loses their job and claims benefit 2.Change of circumstance (natural migration), e.g. when an extra child is born 3.Managed migration, when DWP initiates the transfer onto UC DWPs claim that no one will be worse off! only applies to managed migration! Transitional protection for this group means cash amount can not go down

13 Some affected groups...

14 Disabled Adults Current Disability Premiums will be replaced with just two elements: limited capability for work limited capability for work related activity Entitlement based on the Work Capability Assessment, rather than DLA/PIP assessment Limited Capability for Work element likely to be the same level as ESA WRAG component Limited Capability for Work Related Activity element is likely to be higher than ESA Support component, but lower than Severe Disability Premium (SDP). Big winners and losers!

15 Disabled Adults – other changes No equivalent of Permitted Earnings Higher earned income disregard, but no equivalent of WTC disability element Carer Element not paid in addition to Limited Capability Elements – one or the other

16 Loss of SDP – Citizens Advice example

17 Disabled Children Two rates of disabled child additions Higher rate when child awarded highest rate of DLA (care) or is registered blind Lower rate when child awarded other rates of either component of DLA (mobility or care) Figures proposed to date suggest that higher rate may be same or more than current Child Tax Credit severe disability element But lower rate same as WRAG component, worth half of current Child Tax Credit disability element of £57 per week Note: DLA/PIP assessment used for children

18 The Self-Employed Minimum Income Floor Intended as alternative to work conditionality for self- employed Calculated as 35 hours times minimum wage Exemption during start-up period Start-up Period Within 12 months of starting self employment Up to 12 months exemption from MIF Once in every 5 years Duty to report income each month No carry forward from previous month Permitted reductions Flat rate deductions for mileage/use of home

19 Couples where one person over Pension Credit age Under UC the age of the youngest person in a couple will determine whether they claim Pension Credit or UC As well as existing gap in benefit rates, working age also have under occupation rules, work conditionality etc As with examples above, massive difference in income between a natural transition onto UC and managed migration

20 DWP estimates of winners and losers (Impact Assessment Oct 2011)

21 Timetable…

22 Oct 13 Apr 13 Oct 14Oct 15 Oct 16 Oct 17 Pilot New claims from out of work customers Apr 14 Feb 11 Design & build New claims from in work customers Natural transitions due to change of circs Managed transitions Legacy load JSA, ESA, IS, HB, WTC, CTC 8m 6m4.5m2.5m UC load Implementation Timescale

23 Pathfinders and LA led Pilots Pathfinders in Oldham, Tameside, Warrington and Wigan start April 2013. Live UC claims from new JSA claimants Pilots to test aspects of delivery (online, monthly payment, rent to claimant not landlord) from now.... Bath and North East Somerset Council Birmingham CC Caerphilly County BC Dumfries and Galloway Council LB Lewisham Melton and Rushcliffe BC as partnership Newport CC North Dorset DC North Lanarkshire Council Oxford CC West Dunbartonshire Council West Lindsey DC

24 Conclusion: Winners and Losers One year to go! But draft UC regs not complete and further draft regs this month. Entitlement rates and disregards in December (presumably) Modelling winners and losers at the moment requires guess work as to rates and rules Winners have an incentive to transfer to UC via a change of circumstance. In line with policy intention to encourage 1-16 hours work Losers have an incentive to be part of managed migration and get transitional protection

25 Conclusion: Impact on LAs Difficult to estimate run down in HB caseload due to switching incentive for UC winners Council Tax Support schemes re-designed from April 2014 to align rules (e.g. on self-employed) Council Tax Support schemes may need to split working age claimants into those claiming UC and those not April 2013 changes mean a big cohort of losers. In contrast UC losers are protected Cant pay rather than wont pay may be biggest problem for new Council Tax Support schemes

26 My contact details: Email: Phone: 07816 638590 Web:


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