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Welfare rights

18 September, 2019

Universal Credit Sanctions (Zero Hours Contracts) Bill fails to complete passage through Parliament before end of session

Prorogation of Parliament on 9 September 2019 means bill is among those that will make no further progress

18 September, 2019

DWP confirms that claims for universal credit can be made without a national insurance number

New edition of Touchbase advises that, once conditions of entitlement have been established, national insurance number application will be prioritised and advance can be paid

18 September, 2019

DWP sets out improvements to information about appointments for universal credit claimants

New edition of Touchbase says that changes will ensure that reasons for appointment and consequences of failing to attend are clear

17 September, 2019

Liberal Democrat Party agrees £5bn spending pledge to make benefits system ‘work for everyone’

Autumn 2019 Conference passes motion that also includes measures to bring an end to the five week wait for universal credit, benefit sanctions and the two child limit

17 September, 2019

Outsourcing of PIP assessments gives ‘clear example’ of where external service provision has harmed vulnerable people

Institute for Government also reports 'significant' concerns over loss of proper oversight and the ability to ensure an adequate service

17 September, 2019

Further revocation and re-enactment of bereavement support payment regulations in Northern Ireland

New statutory rule

16 September, 2019

HMCTS introduces webchat service for social security appeals enquiries

New service is available in relation to appeals submitted either on paper or online

13 September, 2019

HMCTS ‘must maintain a strong grip’ if it is to deliver courts and tribunal reform that works better for everyone, says NAO

New report highlights success in introducing online services but notes that work on social security appeals is behind due to inability to agree terms with DWP

13 September, 2019

Supreme Court’s observations in Gubeladze that factual, not legal, residence is what Article 17(1)(a) of Directive 2004/38 EC requires also apply to Article 17(1)(b)

[2019] UKUT 250 (AAC)

13 September, 2019

Scottish Government estimates that benefit freeze, cuts to universal credit work allowances and two-child limit will reduce welfare spending in Scotland by £500 million per year

However, Annual Report on Welfare Reform also says these post-2015 reforms represent a relatively small proportion of the UK Government's benefit cuts since 2010 which will lead to £3.7 billion cut in spending by 2020/2021

13 September, 2019

Introduction of funeral support payment from 16 September 2019 as part of Scotland’s devolved social security system

New statutory instrument makes detailed provision for new payment that replaces DWP’s funeral expense payment in Scotland

12 September, 2019

Complaints about the DWP ‘too often’ show that it has not followed steps to safeguard vulnerable claimants

Independent Case Examiner's annual report also says recent discussions have provided some reassurance of improvement but she will continue to pay close attention

12 September, 2019

As few as 15 per cent of PIP mandatory reconsiderations lead to change in award

New DWP statistics also show that clearance times have more than doubled since previous year, increasing from 32 to 69 calendar days

12 September, 2019

More than half of initial claims for ESA result in claimant being placed in the Support Group

New DWP statistics also highlight that 26 per cent were found fit for work in the quarter to March 2019

12 September, 2019

PIP and ESA appeal success rate continues increasing trend, reaching 75 per cent in last quarter

New Ministry of Justice statistics also highlight that average success rate across all benefit appeals increased from 67 to 71 per cent compared to last year

12 September, 2019

Government provides update addressing UN Committee’s concerns about impact of austerity measures on disabled people

DWP Minister says that, while there is always more that can be done, the government has made 'great steps' in the last year towards creating a 'society that works for everyone'

11 September, 2019

DWP does not rule out using conditionality backed by sanctions in further trials of universal credit in-work progression

However, correspondence with Work and Pensions Committee says threat of sanctions 'is not likely to be the best means of achieving in-work progression'