Personal Independence Payment Regulations - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 3:37 pm on 15 March 2017.

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Photo of Lord Henley Lord Henley Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip), The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 3:37, 15 March 2017

My Lords, with the leave of the House, I shall repeat as a Statement an Answer given to an Urgent Question in another place by my right honourable friend the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions on personal independence payments. The Statement is as follows:

“Recent legal judgments have interpreted the assessment criteria for PIP in ways that are different from what was originally intended. The department presented regulations, which clarify the original policy intent, to the Social Security Advisory Committee. I welcome SSAC’s careful consideration and we are looking closely at its suggestions.

But let me be clear: SSAC decided that it did not require the regulations to be formally referred to it and would not therefore consult publicly on them. I believe that it was right to move quickly to clarify the criteria and it is clear that SSAC is not challenging that decision.

I want to make clear again that this is not a policy change, nor is it intended to make new savings. This is about restoring the original intention of the benefit, which has been expanded by the legal judgments, and providing clarity and certainty for claimants. I reiterate my commitment that there will be no further welfare savings beyond those already legislated for. It will not result in any claimants seeing a reduction in the amount of PIP previously awarded by the Department for Work and Pensions”.

My Lords, that concludes the Statement.