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Overturning Real Time Earning Descisions


Simon Jones
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Universal Credit, Landlords Services, NPT Homes, Neath

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Just wanted to share something with you all ……

I have had a case where someone has had their earnings posted to the HMRC incorrectly (1 month late).
The person had 2 payments then used for one assessment period resulting in a Zero payment from UC.
The previous month they did have an overpayment from UC as no earnings were taken into account.
This, over the 2 months left the tenant £210 worse off.
The person asked for it to be looked at but got nowhere.
After speaking with the Job Centre they advise you have to ask for a REAL TIME INFORMATION DISPUTE for it to be look at again.

Even though the person then took in proof that she wasn’t paid this amount it still resulted in a no from UC.

I requested an MR which still came back as no to changing their decision.

I then quoted a case law for a similar case

Although the result was still a no after sending this letter I contacted the Port Talbot Job Centre who then looked into it again and managed to get the decision overturned and have the £210 paid to the person.

They quoted this at the bottom of the decision letter which we can use in similar cases now.

The law used to make this decision
Universal Credit Regulations 2013
Amended 2014
Reg 61 3 (b)
Welfare Reform Act 2012
Social Security Act 1998 Sections 8
Universal Credit, Personal Independence Payment, Jobseekers Allowance
and Employment and Support Allowance (Decisions and Appeals)
Regulations 2013, Regulations 5 and 7

      [ Edited: 10 Jan 2019 at 01:52 pm by Simon Jones ]
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Early Warning System, Child Poverty Action Group

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CPAG is hearing about an increasing number of cases where RTI figures are wrong, but DWP are refusing to correct UC awards until they’ve exhausted the internal DWP/HMRC RTI dispute process.

We’ve raised this with them on a policy level and they have confirmed that their current policy is to follow whatever the RTI system says even if there is documentary evidence in front of them showing it to be inaccurate.  They are looking into speeding up the RTI dispute process (which is currently taking a few months).

They also want to identify employers who are entering information incorrectly.  If you happen to have a case where a claimant affected by this RTI problem would consent to their employer being contacted by DWP/HMRC about their mistakes, do let us know.  (Not holding out much hope that claimants in unstable employment would be up for getting their employers investigated).

In the meantime, we will be following up on the DWP’s interpretation of reg 61.  They initially indicated that they won’t be addressing the interpretation of this reg with regard to inaccurate RTI whilst there is an ongoing case concerning the same reg (assessment period case).  We are pushing back on that and considering JR action.

Do keep submitting cases to the Early Warning System or email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Elliot Kent
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I did an FtT appeal fairly recently on an RTI issue - the claimant entirely denied having ever worked for the named firm but the RTI said she had been there for 4 months. The DWP response failed even to provide the up-to-date version of reg 61 and used the version from the original regulations (which included no discretion to correct the RTI) - no information was provided as to where the RTI had come from or whether it was accurate. The Judge then directed that the appeal should be transferred to HMRC. It petered out as my client decided to withdraw the appeal. Would be happy to provide info if you want it.

      [ Edited: 22 Feb 2019 at 05:07 pm by Elliot Kent ]
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Yes, I’d love details of any cases please!  The more cases and the more detail, the better.  Online form or email is fine - I can call or email you back to discuss in more depth, if required.


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Written answer from yesterday that says, of 380,000 UC payments that were made in January 2019 and had adjustments (which might be due to earnings or something else) -

- 88% had earnings information from RTI
- 2% had self-reported earnings
- 9% had income from other sources such as self-employed earnings or other income

So guess that means about 2% of employed people are having to self-report…