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25 March, 2021

Despite previous warnings, neither the MOJ or HMCTS have a firm grip on the data they need to understand the effectiveness or impact of the court reform programme

Public Accounts Committee says that there appears not to have been any tangible progress since the publication of the MoJ-commissioned Digital Justice Report in 2019

25 March, 2021

Number of children, pensioners and disabled households living in relative poverty was on the increase even before the start of the Covid-19 pandemic

New poverty statistics also show that 8 per cent of households were food insecure in 2019/2020

25 March, 2021

Scottish Government and local authorities agree new strategy to support people at risk of homelessness and destitution due to their immigration status under UK legislation

Agreed actions include piloting new hardship fund to support people with 'no recourse to public funds'

25 March, 2021

Uprating of benefits that Scottish Ministers have responsibility for in 2021/2022

New statutory instrument

25 March, 2021

Uprating of social security assistance in Scotland in 2021/2022

New statutory instrument provides for increased rates of Funeral Support Payment, Best Start Grant, Early Learning Payment, and Child Winter Heating Assistance

24 March, 2021

Adding telephone and video as channels for undertaking medical assessments for ESA, universal credit, PIP and industrial injuries disablement benefit

New DWP guidance

24 March, 2021

DHP contribution for English and Welsh local authorities in 2021/2022 taking into account reductions due to errors in calculating contribution for 2020/2021

New DWP guidance

23 March, 2021 Open access

DWP announces 80 new temporary jobcentre sites, with ‘dozens more’ expected to follow

However, Minister says that opening of new sites is 'not about reversing previous decisions' on renewal of DWP estate

23 March, 2021

Government piloting ‘single sign-on and digital identity service’ to succeed Verify

While best elements of Verify will be reused, all parties are keen to move on from its 'over-elaborate expectations trajectory', says Cabinet Minister

23 March, 2021

Standard interest rate charged on loans for mortgage interest drops to 0.3 per cent

Fall reflects reduction in OBR forecast gilt rates in its November 2020 fiscal outlook

23 March, 2021 Open access

Learning and Skills think tank highlights unequal impact of pandemic on employment and incomes of young people, BAME populations and single parents

New report calls on government to focus on building a better and more inclusive post-Covid economy for the future, not simply return to ‘business as usual’

23 March, 2021 Open access

Covid-19 likely to have ‘lasting consequences’ for spending on universal credit

OBR highlights implications of the pandemic on caseloads and awards, particularly in relation to the health-related elements of the benefit

23 March, 2021

Total value of payments to PIP claimants in Northern Ireland was more than 50 per cent higher than expected in 2019/2020

However, Audit Office also finds underspends in other areas that the Department for Communities largely attributes to fewer than expected claimant appeals

22 March, 2021 Open access

Non-partisan Commission on Social Security Reform launched by think tank to support post-Covid-19 economic recovery and strengthen UK’s safety net

Bright Blue think tank warns that ‘deep and disproportionate' cuts to working-age benefits in response to the economic crisis of the late 2000s 'cannot happen again' as we come out of pandemic

22 March, 2021

Scottish Government announces more than £3 million funding for advice services in GP surgeries

Launching in September 2021, new Welfare Advice and Health Partnerships will work across 150 GP Practices

22 March, 2021

Scottish Government announces launch date for Child Disability Payment in pilot areas

Families of children with a disability living in Dundee, Perth and Kinross and the Western Isles will be able to apply for the new payment from 26 July 2021

22 March, 2021

Welsh Government announces new £500 payment for bereaved parents

Payment will be offered by Registrar when death is registered and therefore no claim will be necessary, confirms Minister

19 March, 2021 Open access

Senior President of Tribunals issues amended Pilot Practice Directions in response to the continued impact of the Covid-19 pandemic

Directions relating to contingency arrangements and panel composition in the First-tier and Upper Tribunal extended to 18 September 2021