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Welfare rights

26 January, 2021 Open access

Expenditure on crisis grants in Scotland up by more than 20 per cent over same period last year

New statistics also report an increase in awards made to people coming from less deprived areas possibly indicating a change in demographic profile of applicants linked to Covid-19

25 January, 2021 Open access

Self-employed tax credit claimants who are unable to report their final income for 2019/2020 by 31 January 2021 should do so ‘as soon as possible’

HMRC advises that, where delay is due to impact of Covid-19, it will update the income used to calculate finalised entitlement 'in most cases'

22 January, 2021

High Court rules that requirement for universal credit claimants to pay childcare costs upfront before receiving childcare costs element is unlawful

[2021] EWHC 102 (Admin)

22 January, 2021 Open access

DWP is delivering more than 2,500 pieces of IT equipment a week to ensure that all its staff are able to work from home

Work and Pensions Minister says that more than 74,000 are already able to work remotely representing more than 80 per cent of the Department's workforce

22 January, 2021 Open access

Government’s Covid-19 response has seen it ‘scrambling’ to reverse the cuts to DWP staff numbers made over the past 10 years

By the time the pandemic struck, DWP staff numbers were almost 30 per cent down, former Shadow Work and Pensions Minister highlights

22 January, 2021 Open access

Government provides update on cases where PIP claimants will not have had their award extended as a result of Covid-19

Specified cases 'are not included in Covid-19 easements and will not be extended as part of this exercise', says DWP Minister

22 January, 2021

DWP announces first Local Partnership Agreements with HM Prison and Probation Service to support offenders to prepare for release from prison

New collaborative working commitment runs alongside the national rollout of telephone support for prisoners making online universal credit claims and advances

22 January, 2021

Joint Committee on Human Rights launches call for evidence on government’s independent review of the Human Rights Act

Committee seeks views on questions including whether Act has increased ability of individuals to enforce their human rights, and whether correct balance has been struck in relationship between domestic courts and the ECHR

22 January, 2021

Ensuring that EEA nationals can continue to be awarded funeral expenses payment where funeral is taking place in UK

New statutory instrument

21 January, 2021 Open access

DWP confirms plan to deploy 450 more staff to its Debt Management service telephone line to ensure target of answering 90 per cent of calls is met

However, Permanent Secretary reports that PIP, attendance allowance and state pension telephony services are also currently providing a service level 'below the expected standards'

21 January, 2021 Open access

Scottish Government urged to commit to work toward a Minimum Income Guarantee for all

Covid-19 has brutally exposed the inequalities that still blight the lives of too many, says Social Renewal Advisory Board

21 January, 2021 Open access

DWP has been ‘far too slow’ to provide its staff with the kit needed to work from home during the Covid-19 pandemic

Public and Commercial Services Union says that staff whose only reason for not working from home is the lack of available kit or software should be sent home on paid special leave

21 January, 2021 Open access

Covid crisis is creating a ‘child poverty timebomb’, warns Children’s Commissioner

Politicians must take child poverty out of the ‘too difficult box’ and come up with a big, bold, long-term plan to fix it, Commissioner urges

21 January, 2021 Open access

DWP has ‘no plans’ to extend time limit for payment of contributory ESA where claimants have reached 365-day limit but not had work capability assessment

However, Minister confirms that there is a ring-fenced operational team working on progressing those claims in absence of face-to-face assessments

20 January, 2021

Northern Ireland Communities Minister instructs Department to look at in-house PIP assessment model, as recommended in second independent review of PIP assessment process

However, in her response to a question on the likely extension of Capita's assessment contract for two years, Minister says move away from external provider cannot happen right away

20 January, 2021

Communities Minister confirms Northern Ireland Executive’s commitment to prioritise existing welfare reform mitigations in 2021/2022

Responding to questions in the Assembly yesterday, Deirdre Hargey also confirms that her Department is looking at what further mitigations and protections it can bring in

19 January, 2021 Open access

Jobcentres ‘should be closed now’, says Public and Commercial Services Union

Union highlights that DWP's insistance on all jobcentres remaining open goes against government advice to work from home

19 January, 2021

LITRG repeats its call for government to raise threshold for High Income Child Benefit Charge

If threshold remains at £50,000, then basic-rate taxpayers will be affected by charge for the first time in 2021/2022