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Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: State Retirement Pensions: British Nationals Abroad (23 February 2015)

Lord Freud: The bulk of individuals receiving UK state pensions overseas voluntarily moved abroad whilst in their twenties and thirties. This means they will have spent the majority of their working lives outside the UK and contributing to the economy of their country of residence. For the small minority of pensioners who decide to move overseas at retirement it is advisable that they check the...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Children: Maintenance (23 February 2015)

Lord Freud: Performance indicators have been set for those aspects of child maintenance activity that are most critical to the objectives set out in the Government’s strategy on arrears published in January 2013, namely to prevent the build up of arrears in the first place and prioritise the recovery of arrears where this will benefit children today. We therefore have indicators, for example, on...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: European Union (23 February 2015)

Lord Freud: As you will be aware, the Balance of Competences Review concluded in December. It was the most comprehensive analysis of the UK’s relationship with the EU ever undertaken. The Review involved a large number of Departments across Whitehall to produce the 32 reports. The Review was based on the evidence and views received through widespread consultation with interested parties from across...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Post Office Card Account (23 February 2015)

Lord Freud: For reasons of financial inclusion the Post Office Ltd (POL) were financially incentivised to migrate 700,000 users of Post Office card accounts to mainstream bank accounts over the life of the current contract. As part of this contract Government is not responsible to pay for the upkeep of these 700,000 accounts. Through the life of the contract to date, customer volumes have reduced by...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Work Experience (10 February 2015)

Lord Freud: Her Majesty’s Government promote equal access to intern opportunities through a series of communications strands such as: The rising awareness of Disability Confident Britain and it’s media profile will help increase awareness of the Access to Work (AtW) support available; Continually improving and developing Advisory knowledge and skills in supporting Disabled...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: State Retirement Pensions: British Nationals Abroad (10 February 2015)

Lord Freud: The policy of this Coalition Government on the up-rating of UK state pension paid to people living overseas is the same as that of successive post-war Governments. This is to up-rate such pensions where we are legally required to under the terms of EU law or a bilateral social security agreement. The up-rating policy is determined by the differing social security arrangements for the...

Written Ministerial Statements — Department for Work and Pensions: Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme (10 February 2015)

Lord Freud: I am today announcing an increase to the tariff of payments made under the Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme which was introduced by the Mesothelioma Act in April 2014. I will shortly bring forward regulations to increase the tariff from 80% of average civil claims to 100% for those diagnosed on or after today’s date. While the uprating will apply to those diagnosed from today, the...

Universal Credit — Question for Short Debate (4 February 2015)

Lord Freud: My Lords, I am grateful to my noble friend Lord German for bringing this Question to the House. As noble Lords have said, I promised to come back with the findings of the review that I committed to undertake as we went through the Pensions Act 2014. Noble Lords have referred to my Written Statement on 23 October. The regulations for the measures were brought into force last November. Let me...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Social Security Benefits (4 February 2015)

Lord Freud: The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, the Rt. Hon. Iain Duncan Smith, set out on 8 December 2014 (Official Report, column 633) how the Department for Work and Pensions will be doing much to raise awareness of Short Term Benefit Advances (STBAs). This will include providing more information to claimants about STBAs online and in Jobcentres. Staff guidance on STBAs will also be updated...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Occupational Health (4 February 2015)

Lord Freud: Fit for Work, previously known as the Health and Work Service, is comprised of two elements: i) Free, expert and impartial work-related health advice via a website and telephone line ii) Referral to an occupational health professional for employees who are, or are expected to, undergo a period of sickness absence from work lasting four weeks or more. The Fit for Work occupational health...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Japan Tobacco: Ballymena (2 February 2015)

Lord Freud: The European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) Regulations set out strict criteria and eligibility for potential applicants. It is questionable whether the redundancy situation in this case meets EGF eligibility. The Department of Employment and Learning in Northern Ireland, through its Redundancy Service, offers tailor-made and wide ranging packages of support measures such as those that...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Social Security Benefits: Disability (29 January 2015)

Lord Freud: This was an internal review completed more than a year ago. Since then significant improvements have been introduced. As such, the review is out of date and the Department has no plans to publish the findings.

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Personal Independence Payment (29 January 2015)

Lord Freud: The information requested regarding interventions is not currently available. Information on claims made to Personal Independence Payment (PIP) broken down by condition is not available. By 21 October 2014, 1,535 people classified as having a movement disorder as their primary condition were in receipt of PIP. The Department has robust processes in place to assure the quality of...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Winter Fuel Payments (26 January 2015)

Lord Freud: Eligibility for Winter Fuel Payments is based on female State Pension age. The latest estimates we have show that there are currently around 600,000 higher and additional rate taxpayers in Great Britain in 2014/15 who are above the female State Pension age and therefore qualify for Winter Fuel Payments1. We ask people who want to return their payment to do so by post so that it can be...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Personal Independence Payment (26 January 2015)

Lord Freud: I refer the Noble Lady to the letter my Noble Friend Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth wrote on 21st January 2015 to Lord Dubs, a copy of which has been placed in the House Library, and is attached. Letter to Lord Dubs (PDF Document, 137.3 KB)

Previous Business – Lords: Grand Committee (22 January 2015)

Universal Credit (Work-Related Requirements) In Work Pilot Scheme and Amendment Regulations 2015 – Lord Freud. Orders and Regulations

Written Answers — House of Lords: Mesothelioma: Compensation (22 January 2015)

Lord Freud: A person with diffuse mesothelioma, or their dependents, may be eligible to apply for the Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme (DMPS) if no one has received damages or a specified payment in respect of the disease or is eligible to receive a specified payment from another source. Eligibility for, or receipt of, such payments disqualifies an applicant from receiving a DMPS payment. This...

Employment — Question (21 January 2015)

Lord Freud: We are seeing a strong, broad-balanced and sustained recovery of the UK labour market. Employment is at an all-time high and the number of vacancies is at a record high. The main out-of-work benefits are at their lowest level since 1990.

Employment — Question (21 January 2015)

Lord Freud: One of the best things about this recovery in jobs is that they are going to some of the people who in the past have not taken part in these recoveries. That includes the disabled, where there is a strong improvement of 250,000 jobs over the past year with some 3 million now in employment. We are in a really healthy position in reducing long-term unemployment among youngsters.

Employment — Question (21 January 2015)

Lord Freud: I hope that noble Lords in the House will agree that I was not using rhetoric but gave the facts and figures. As I have just said, disability employment has improved strongly over the past year with 250,000 more disabled people now in work. The employment rate for disabled people now runs at 46%, up 2.5 percentage points on the year. That is strong improvement for the people who need it.

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