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High Court declares plans to migrate SDP claimants to Universal Credit unlawful

The High Court in England and Wales has ruled that the government’s Universal Credit migration arrangements for people who had been in receipt of a Severe Disability Premium and who naturally migrated to Universal Credit before 16 January 2019 are unlawful.

The government will now need to reconsider draft regulations for the managed migration of existing benefit claimants to Universal Credit, and a DWP spokesperson has said that the Department is “considering” its response to the ruling.

Differing amounts of compensation paid to those migrating before and after 16 January 2019

The case in question was brought by claimants in receipt of a severe disability premium who migrated to Universal Credit before the introduction of the SDP Gateway in January 2019.

Under government plans, any claimant in receipt of an SDP who migrated to Universal Credit before the introduction of the gateway would be entitled to £80 per month to compensate for the associated loss in benefits, while claimants who migrate under the managed migration scheme would receive a compensation payment of £180 per month to top up their Universal Credit.  This £180 reflects the actual loss in monetary terms that a claimant in receipt of a Severe Disability Premium is likely to experience as a result of moving to Universal Credit.

The full judgment is available at Bailii.

Tagged In

Benefits, Case law


Etain Ní Fhearghail

This article was written on 5 May 2019. It should not be relied on as a statement of the current law or policy position. For help with housing issues please contact our helpline on 028 9024 5640 or use our online chat service at www.housingadviceNI.org.