Full Service delivery & threat to income management
Universal Credit’s “digital” or “Full Service” is now operating throughout the UK. The “Full Service” completely removes the “gateway” conditions, which operated to restrict access, with only 1.3 awards added over the past 5 years, These awards also involved mainly single unemployed claimants, the majority of whom had no housing costs. Whereas, over the next 4 years, another 6 million, much more complicated cases will be added.
Can DWP deliver – that’s the question everyone is asking?
More than five years after UC’s introduction, DWP administration is still developing the new system and its associated systems & processes, as it goes, resulting in many problems for tenants and landlords alike. Legacy systems, responsible for payment of UC are currently unfit for purpose, causing delays and many inaccuracies, giving rise to rent arrears.
We have been assisting landlords for three years in relation to Full Service delivery, and can point you to the areas that have caused most concern and how best to tackle things when they go wrong. This course, in Edinburgh has been specifically tailored for mainly Housing Association & Council staff and is designed to address the concerns and problems mentioned above; the likely effect this will have on your tenants; your organisation’s collection arrangements, rental income and arrears management.
Programme: (10.00am - 3.30pm) includes:
- When, where and how will Universal Credit’s Full Service system be phased in;
- Who exactly will be able to claim it; when is that likely to happen; what’s the difference between natural and managed migration, and when will each occur; what’s “transitional protection”; what are the key risk tenants and organisation; and how can you assist?
- How will it be claimed; importance of the web based system; the “claimant commitment”; payment dates; Benefit Assessment Periods; non-dependant charges.
- Trusted Partner status; “online portal” access & claim notification; validation of tenant claims; how to access Managed Payments & Third Party deductions.
- How & when it should be paid; what happens when “Live” tenants claims move to UCFS; how to pursue DWP when payment mistakes occur.
- Backdating of claims; changes in circumstances; the “whole month rule”; penalties for late reporting changes.
- “Late revisions”, “Mandatory Reconsideration”; making use of the tenant’s “journal” and “explicit consent”.
- Overpayments of UC; identifying the cause; recoverability from tenant and landlord; how to challenge decisions; how DWP can reduce recovery rates
- Real threats to “housing element” when claims are suspended & cancelled; affected by sanctions; couples separate; two households combine as one; tenant’s move home without giving notice; temporary absences, hospital in-patients, prisoners etc.
- DWP maladministration – how to challenge DWP mistakes/errors; how to pursue “compensation” using the “complaints process” and referrals to the Independent Case Examiner & Parliamentary Commissioner.
- Throughout the day we use practical exercises and real case studies, drawn from UCFS areas, to highlight the main areas of concerns. Ultimately, the tutor will aim to ensure delegates are well informed on how best to maximise tenant entitlement; minimise landlord problems and reduce the potential for rental income loss and the need for recovery action.
Who should attend?
Any member of staff involved in housing & income management, finance, providing advice & support to tenants and those responsible for collecting rent, pursue arrears, whilst complying with Pre-action protocols.
An ex Head of Housing, Revenues & Advice Services, and COSLA Advisor, Bill currently operates UC Advice & Advocacy Ltd, acting as advisor & representative of tenants, Private Landlords and Housing Associations in their respective UC/HB/LHA negotiations with councils and, rather uniquely, represents them in disputes before First and Upper-tier tribunals. The Residential Landlords Association retain Bill as its consultant on all things relating to LHA & UC. Bill also writes regular articles on UC/HB/LHA related topics and responds to landlord’s queries and complaints via various web-based forums, including his own website www.ucadvice.co.uk
If you have any questions about the content of this course, please feel free to contact us.