Vital information about forthcoming benefit changes

Many thanks to Disability Rights UK for this.

Click links or scroll down to find out what is happening and when….

From April 2013

  • Local council tax support replaces council tax benefit. See Factsheet – help with council tax.
  • Mandatory reconsideration and direct lodgement of appeals with HM Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) for universal credit and personal independence payment. See Factsheet – appeals and reconsiderations.
  • Community care grants and crisis loans for general living expenses (including rent in advance) will be abolished and replaced by new local provision. the new provision will be administered by local authorities in England and the devolved administrations in Scotland and Wales. See Factsheet  – the social fund.
  • Crisis loan alignment payments and other crisis loans paid due to issues with benefit will be replaced by a new national scheme of Short Term Advances. This will be administered by the Department for Work and Pensions. Factsheet –the social fund.
  • Total weekly benefits (jobseekers allowance, income support, employment support allowance, housing benefit, child benefit, carers allowance and later the new universal credit) will be limited to £500 a week for lone-parents/couples or £350 per week for single claimants. This benefits cap does not apply to households where someone is claiming working tax credits or getting disability living allowance. See Factsheet – benefits cap.
  • Launch of universal credit pathfinder to demonstrate how the new scheme will work. See Factsheet  – universal credit
  • From 8 April 2013 working age disability living allowance (DLA) will be be replaced by a new personal independence payment (PIP) in pilot areas in the North West and parts of the North East of England. For more information see Factsheet – personal independence payments.
  • The level of in-year rises of income that will be disregarded from calculations of tax credit entitlement will decrease from £10,000 to £5,000. See 2010 budget.
  • Local housing allowance rates will be uprated in line with consumer price index (CPI). See DWP impact assessment.
  • Housing entitlements for working age people in the social sector will reflect family size. Factsheet F44 – housing benefit.
  • From 5th April 2013 the Simplified PAYE Deduction Scheme (SPDS) will close. The SPDS provides an alternative to standard PAYE for non – business employers. It was intended to offer a simpler system particularly for domestic employers or elderly/disabled individuals employing carers. See HMRC impact assessment.

From June 2013

From October 2013

  • Universal credit will start to be rolled out for new claimants in Great Britain. Eventually all new claimants will claim universal credit. If you are getting jobseeker’s allowance, employment support allowance, housing benefit, working tax credit or child tax credit you will be moved over at a later date. See Factsheet F55 – universal credit
  • Universal credit freephone number available. See Minister for Employment Mark Hoban’s statement.
  • Mandatory reconsideration and direct lodgement of appeals with HM Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) for all DWP-administered benefits and child maintenance cases (already introduced for universal credit and personal independence payment). See Factsheet F36 – appeals and reconsiderations.
  • Reassessment/migration onto the personal independence payment of anyone whose DLA award is due to end or who report a change in condition and young people who reach the age of 16. See – personal independence payments.

From March 2014

  • Migration of existing incapacity benefits claimants (incapacity benefit, severe disablement allowance and income support on disability grounds) onto employment and support allowance should be completed by the end of March. Find out more.

From December 2014

  • The proposed date for the abolition of those remaining cases of pre-tax credit income support/income-based jobseeker’s allowance child additions is 31 December 2014. Previously the date of transfer was to have been 31 December 2011 (and before then 2008). For more information see SI 2011/2910.

From April 2015

From October 2015

  • Reassessment/migration onto the personal independence payment, as part of a rolling schedule, of remaining working age DLA claimants. See Factsheet – personal independence payments.

From April 2017

From October 2020

From April 2026

From April 2028

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