Incapacity Benefit

Work and Pensions written question – answered on 30th April 2009.

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Photo of Steve Webb Steve Webb Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many jobseeker's allowance claimants have terminated their claim and immediately claimed incapacity benefit on the grounds of poor mental health in each of the last 24 months.

Photo of Tony McNulty Tony McNulty Minister of State (Employment and Welfare Reform; Minister for London), Department for Work and Pensions

Causes of incapacity are based on the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision, published by the World Health Organisation. To qualify for incapacity benefit/severe disablement allowance, claimants have to undertake a medical assessment of incapacity for work which is called the personal capability assessment. Therefore, the medical condition recorded on the incapacity benefit/severe disablement allowance claim form does not itself confer entitlement to incapacity benefits. For example, the decision for a customer claiming incapacity benefit on the grounds of mental or behavioural disorders would be based on their ability to carry out the range of activities in the personal capability assessment.

The available information is in the following table.

Claimants who flow off jobseeker's allowance and on to incapacity benefit with mental and behavioural disorders
August 2006 22,700
November 2006 22,700
February 2007 27,000
May 2007 25,400
August 2007 23,700
November 2007
February 2008 22,300
May 2008 24,900
August 2008 13,400

1. Data are rounded to the nearest 100.

2. November 2007 data are not available.

3. Figures for the latest quarter do not include any late notifications and are subject to major revision.

4. The table shows the number of people who started an incapacity benefit claim, with a mental and behavioural disorder, within 90 days of flowing off job seeker's allowance.

5. A monthly breakdown is not available.


Department for Work and Pensions Terminations dataset 5 per cent. and Department for Work and Pensions 5 per cent. sample datasets.

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