Assess the impact of welfare reforms on survivors of domestic abuse

Part of Domestic Abuse Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:00 pm on 16th June 2020.

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New clause 38—Social Security: Exemption from repaying benefit advances—

‘(1) The Social Security (Payments on Account of Benefit) Regulations 2013 are amended as follows.

(2) In regulation 7 (definition of financial need), after paragraph (3) insert—

“(4A) It shall be presumed for the purposes of this section that A is in financial need where A—

(a) is or has recently been a victim of domestic abuse; and

(b) provides evidence of the domestic abuse in one of more of the forms set out in regulation 33(2) of the Civil Legal Aid (Procedure) Regulations 2012.

(5) A has recently been a victim of domestic abuse if a period of 12 months has not expired since the domestic abuse was inflicted or threatened.

(6) For the purposes of this section—

(a) ‘domestic abuse’ has the meaning set out in section 1 of the Domestic Abuse Act 2020;

(b) ‘victim of domestic abuse’ means a person on or against whom domestic abuse is inflicted or threatened.”

(3) In regulation 10 (Bringing payments on account of benefit into account), after subparagraph (b) insert—

“(c) In the case of a payment on account of benefit made to a person who can provide evidence of being or having recently been a victim of domestic abuse, subsections (a) and (b) shall not apply.

(d) A person has recently been a victim of domestic abuse if a period of 12 months has not expired since the domestic abuse was inflicted or threatened.

(e) For the purposes of this section—

‘domestic abuse’ has the meaning set out in section 1 of the Domestic Abuse Act 2020;

‘victim of domestic abuse’ means a person on or against whom domestic abuse is inflicted or threatened.

(f) For the purposes of this section, evidence of being of having recently been a victim of domestic abuse must be provided in one of more of the forms set out in regulation 33(2) of the Civil Legal Aid (Procedure) Regulations 2012.”’