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Welfare Reform

Cliffs of Moher, Co Clare

Housing Rights, with Advice NI and the Law Centre (NI) launched a joint report highlighting the approaching 2020 ‘cliff edge’ when funding for the mitigation package, agreed as part of the Fresh Start Agreement in 2015, is due to expire.

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Benefits, Welfare Reform

A new report by the Smith Institute ‘Safe as Houses 2: a follow-up report into the impact of Universal Credit on Southwark Council’s housing tenants rent payment behaviour’ show that what could have been argued to be ‘teething problems’ with the new benefit system, appear to have more systemic routes, with rent arrears appearing to be a longer-term consequence of Universal Credit for many social housi

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Benefits, Social Tenancies, Welfare Reform, Affordability

The High Court in England and Wales has recently heard a challenge relating to Universal Credit assessment periods. Joined claims from CPAG and Leigh Day solicitors were heard by the court on the 27 and 28 November. 

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Benefits, Outside NI, Welfare Reform, Legal

In a recent statement, Amber Rudd MP, who was appointed Secretary for Work & Pensions following Esther McVey MP’s resignation, has advised that she will listen to expert guidance with the aim of fixing Universal Credit.

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Benefits, Outside NI, Welfare Reform, Policy
Graphic from Karly Greene's presentation

Housing Rights held its annual conference on the private rented sector on 21 November. This year’s conference was sponsored by TDS NI and focused on changes, challenges and collaborations in the sector. The day was grouped into four themes:

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Benefits, Regulation, Research, Private Tenancies, Welfare Reform, Policy, Landlord

The Universal Credit and Jobseeker’s Allowance (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2018 were laid before Parliament on 5 November 2018. The most significant change brought about by these regulations is the removal of the restrictions on Universal Credit housing costs claims by job-seeking 18 to 21 year olds, a policy that was introduced despite much criticism in 2017.

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Benefits, Legislation, Welfare Reform
Picture of chancellor's red box

Yesterday’s budget contained a number of measures designed to mitigate some of the most controversial aspects of Universal Credit. Here’s a quick run through of the most relevant housing and welfare announcements.

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Benefits, Welfare Reform

Regulations were issued in August expanding the existing capital disregards relating to benefit arrears. Capital, resulting from a benefit arrear payable as a result of an error or on a point of law can now be disregarded for the lifetime of the benefit award. Previously, such capital could only have been disregarded for a maximum period of 52 weeks.

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Benefits, Legislation, Welfare Reform

The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) has recently launched guidance for Departmental staff on what changes of circumstance trigger natural migration to Universal Credit.

Universal Credit is being rolled out at present and replaces the following benefits:

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Benefits, Welfare Reform

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