Good morning

Esther McVey, Secretary of State for Work & Pensions made a statement last week to the House of Commons relating to the Full Service rollout programme which appears to have been misunderstood.

What she announced was a temporary slowdown in the rollout of the “Managed or forced migration” stage of the rollout, but that does NOT affect, in any way, DWP’s plan to make every area in the UK a Full Service area by December 2018.

Nor does it affect, the “New” claims for Universal Credit that will be taken from tenants, living in such areas, who suddenly become unemployed; or people who are claiming JSA and submit a medical certificate to claim Employment Support Allowance; people who move from one council area to another and who need assistance with “housing costs”; single parents on Income Support who are required to claim UCFS because their youngest child turns 5 forcing them to make a “claimant commitment” etc.

The rollout programme will also continue to require those tenants, already on “Live” service UC, to register an online claim for UC Full Service and from that point manage their account online.

What is being delayed is the forced movement of people, claiming JSA, ESA, Income Support, Housing Benefit, Tax Credits who from July 2019 were expected to start the transition to UC Full Service. This is the part that is being delayed with only 10,000 added in 2019 with the bulk being asked to move over starting 2020. The delay is also predicted to postpone the end date for the completion of the exercise to December 2023.

I hope this note clarifies the situation.

Bill Irvine

UC Advice & Advocacy Ltd