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Forum Home  →  Discussion  →  Universal credit administration  →  Thread

will housing credit and child credit be new stand-alone benefits for PC claimants ?

Robbie Spence
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Decided to post this on new universal credit discussion forum though it could equally be on pensions or HB forums.
Re rightsnet story on 4 November 2011 - Housing element of pension credit under universal credit regime and Lord Freud’s statement -  I can’t work out if housing credit and child credit will be new stand-alone benefits for PC claimants whose UC counterparts would get housing/child support within universal credit. Obviously pensioners are not working age so can’t get UC, but if housing credit and child credit will be new stand-alone benefits for PC claimants who will deal with them, and won’t this undermine the rationale of simplifying the benefits system?

Gareth Morgan
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Robby - 07 November 2011 12:52 PM

... won’t this undermine the rationale of simplifying the benefits system?

Shock, horror, surely not!

The intention is that, like GPC and SPC, they will be elements within PC but any or all of the elements can be claimed by individual households.

Karen Holmes
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And then there are the people of pensionable age who do decide to carry on working. At the moment they could get WTC. Do they claim UC even though they aren’t ‘working age’? All these complexities for a simple system.

Robbie Spence
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Thanks Gareth, as before, for answering my queries. So that means there will be DWP staff processing housing credit and child credit for universal credit claimants – which was to be expected – and also DWP staff in Pensions Service doing the same thing. They’ll be processing housing credit and child credit for the relatively few pensioners (compared to UC numbers) who need housing credit and child credit. It’ll mean extra work and training and new pension credit software, etc, to incorporate housing credit and child credit calculations.

Not exactly shocked about how this undermines the rationale of simplifying the benefits system? But puzzled as it is bound to mean large increase in admin costs in Pensions Service for the relatively small numbers involved. Can the policy lobbyists out there make any capital out of this?

Gareth Morgan
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Robby - 07 November 2011 02:32 PM

So that means there will be DWP staff processing housing credit and child credit for universal credit claimants – which was to be expected – and also DWP staff in Pensions Service doing the same thing.

Not quite.  UC will be one benefit with adult, child and housing amounts making up the needs side of the sum and one taper against the lot.  PC will have separate calculations for the different credits (although we’re not sure about children).