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Each year we publish more than 1,500 news updates to rightsnet, bringing you details of the latest legislative developments, new government guidance, consultation and policy documents and more … all brought together and summarised within 24 hours of their issue.

Welfare rights news

16 September

Government agrees to reconsider decision to cease funding for local welfare provision

Following intervention by CPAG in a judicial review challenge, there will now be a consultation and impact assessment before a new decision is made

16 September, 2014

Affordable accommodation and action on low pay are best ways of reducing housing benefit bill, says Chartered Institute for Housing

New report argues that short term measures, such as bedroom tax and benefit cap, do nothing to tackle the causes of welfare dependency

16 September, 2014

15 September

Office for Budget Responsibility should monitor and forecast child poverty levels, says Joseph Rowntree Foundation

New report also calls for comprehensive strategy 'to move from treating the symptoms of poverty to fundamentally tackling its causes'

15 September, 2014

12 September

Removal of requirement that employers report details of statutory sick pay

New statutory instrument makes changes following abolition of percentage threshold scheme

12 September, 2014

DWP awarded around 79,000 short term benefit advances in 2013/2014

Pensions Minister also confirms that average award was approximately £57

12 September, 2014

11 September

Universal credit needs to be ‘rebalanced’ if it is to work for disabled people

New report from Citizens Advice calls for changes to help ensure that as many people as possible see a genuine gain from every hour of work and the most disadvantaged are protected

11 September, 2014

Child Support Agency begins process of closing all existing cases

Reforms will see 800,000 cases closed over next three years

11 September, 2014

Ministry of Justice reports 86 per cent reduction in welfare benefit appeals compared with same period last year

New official statistics also highlight reduction of 30 per cent on the last quarter

11 September, 2014

Almost three quarters of decided ESA claims are successful, and almost a third of appeals are allowed

DWP publishes new work capability assessment statistics

11 September, 2014

Joseph Rowntree Foundation highlights concerns around unintended consequences of benefit sanctions

Sanctions are having a disproportionate effect on particular groups, according to new paper on the efficacy and ethicality of conditional forms of welfare

11 September, 2014

10 September

14 per cent fewer housing benefit cases referred for fraud investigation during 2013/2014 compared to previous year

New DWP statistics also show that the number of housing benefit overpayments identified increased by 5 per cent

10 September, 2014

DWP pilots to improve employment outcomes for working age claimants with mental health problems

New edition of Touchbase provides information about pilots that include combining psychological and employment support

10 September, 2014

Pensions Act commencement order issued

New statutory instrument

10 September, 2014

9 September

Resolution Foundation launches review of current design of universal credit

'Strong case' for making the most of the current window of opportunity before the policy is fully rolled out to reassess it against its original ambitions

09 September, 2014

8 September

European Commission issues legal challenge to UK right to reside test for child benefit and child tax credit

Court of Justice of European Union asked to find that test not permitted by Regulation (EC) No 883/2004 or that it directly discriminates against nationals of other Member States

08 September, 2014

Further roll-out of universal credit to the North West of England

New DWP guidance

08 September, 2014

DWP trialling psychological tests to assess whether claimants have resistance to work

Employment Minister outlines new scheme under which those who are less mentally prepared will be given more intensive coaching, whilst those who are optimistic will face less rigorous regime

08 September, 2014

DWP aims to release first statistics on mandatory reconsideration by the end of 2014

Minister for Disabled People also confirms that statisticians working on data about mandatory reconsideration for ESA 'as a priority'

08 September, 2014

5 September

Government responds to Work and Pensions Committee's report on fraud and error in the benefits system

Real-time information system will be used to identify earnings and non-state pensions that have not been declared

05 September, 2014

Personal budgets paid for children and young people with special needs ignored for IS, JSA and ESA

New DWP guidance

05 September, 2014

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