Between 2017 – 2018 the Government will roll out the second stage of Universal Credit across the UK. Please click here to look at the Governments roll out timetable.
Child Tax Credit (CTC) changes from April 2017:
CTC will be limited to 2 children. Any subsequent children born after April 2017 will not be eligible for further support.
The ‘family element’ of £545 per year will be abolished. Families with one or more children born before April 2017 will continue to get the family element but new claims after this date will not.
Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) work-related activity group
From 1 April 2017, new ESA claimants who are placed in the Work-Related Activity Group will receive the same rate of payment as those claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance and the equivalent in Universal Credit
Universal Credit (UC) changes
UC for children will be reduced in the same way as CTC – from April 2017 it will be limited to 2 children, there will be no increase for subsequent children if you are already claiming UC.
New claims for UC from families with more than two children will be redirected to Tax Credits until November 2018.
Children born after 6 April 2017 will not be eligible for the ‘first child premium’ which means the child element for the first child will be the same rate as for the second child.
Parents, including lone parents, will be expected to have work focused interviews when their youngest child turns 1, then start work preparation when their youngest child turns 2, all leading up to them being expected to look for work when their youngest child turns 3.
From April 2017, the 'taper rate' for universal credit will change from 65p in the pound to 63p in the pound
The Limited Capability for Work element will be abolished to mirror changes to ESA, reducing support for those deemed capable of some work-related activity
18-21-year old’s who are on UC will have to either apply for training/ apprenticeships or attend a work placements from six month after the start of their claim. Apart from certain exempt groups (those considered to be vulnerable) – proposed introduction from April 2017
There will also no longer be automatic entitlement to the housing element of UC for 18-21-year-old who are unemployed. Though there will be various exceptions for parents, vulnerable groups and people who could previously afford their rent without assistance.
Bereavement Support Payment
To replace Bereavement Payment, Bereavement Allowance and Widowed Parents Allowance
Autumn /End of 2017 Free Childcare Extended
Free childcare entitlement will be doubled from 15 hours to 30 hours a week for working parents of 3 and 4-year old’s from September 2017.
Universal credit rollout should be delayed as it is 'failing too many people' see the Guardian Newspapers article here.
The roll out of PIP is running far behind schedule, the DWP have confirmed.
All existing DLA claimants should have been ‘invited’ to claim PIP by April of this year.
But a poster on the Rightsnet forum has confirmed that this target is now history.
Instead the aim is now that all working age DLA claimants will have received their invitation letters by late 2018, with the final assessments and transfers not being completed until mid-2019.
However, we reported last month that there had been a huge fall in the number of DLA to PIP cases being sent to Atos and Capita since January of this year.
So, whether the DWP will stick to this new target remains to be seen.
Full article can be found here