Benefits

House of Lords written question – answered on 8th November 2010.

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Photo of Lord German Lord German Liberal Democrat

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many employment and support allowance claims have been resolved by withdrawal of the claims, for the period from the introduction of the work capability assessment until the end of September 2010, broken down by month of resolution.

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many employment and support allowance claims have been resolved by an unappealed decision of "fit to work", for the period from the introduction of the work capability assessment until the end of September 2010, broken down by month of resolution.

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many employment and support allowance claims have been resolved by (a) an upheld appeal of a "fit to work" decision, and (b) an unsuccessful appeal of a "fit to work" decision, for the period from the introduction of the work capability assessment until the end of September 2010, in each case broken down by month of resolution.

To ask Her Majesty's Government in how many employment and support allowance claims there is an appeal ongoing following a "fit to work" decision, for the period from the introduction of the work capability assessment until the end of September 2010, broken down by month of resolution.

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many employment and support allowance claims have been resolved by (a) a decision to place the claimant in the work related activity group, and (b) a decision to place the claimant in the support group for the period from the introduction of the work capability assessment until the end of September 2010, broken down by month of resolution.

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many employment and support allowance claims are currently unresolved for the period from the introduction of the work capability assessment until the end of September 2010, broken down by month of resolution.

Photo of Lord Freud Lord Freud The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The table below shows the number of employment and support allowance claims closed before assessment was started or completed by the month of claim closure. Figures are rounded to the nearest hundred.

Month ESA claim closed Claim closed before completing assessment
Oct-08 0
Nov-08 400
Dec-08 2,000
Jan-09 6,500
Feb-09 8,400
Mar-09 11,700
Apr-09 11,700
May-09 15,100
Jun-09 16,500
Jul-09 17,100
Aug-09 15,800
Sep-09 17,800
Oct-09 19,500
Nov-09 21,700
Dec-09 16,500
Jan-10 17,000
Feb-10 19,700
Mar-10 22,900
Apr-10 19,100
May-10 18,400
Jun-10 18,100
Total 295,900

We do not hold information on whether an appeal regarding an employment and support allowance claim has been raised until the appeal has been heard by the Ministry of Justice. There are also a number of unresolved appeals which mean figures will refresh as more appeals are heard. Because the data are not available in the format requested, figures are presented on the number of fit for work decisions by the date of assessment, along with decisions which place people in the work related activity group (WRAG) and the support group, and separately, the number of appeals by month of hearing split between either decisions in favour of the appellant or where the DWP decision was upheld.

The table below shows the number of fit for Work, WRAG and support group decisions by the month the final decision was made-figures are rounded to the nearest hundred.

Month of Assessment Support Group Work Related Activity Group Fit for Work
Oct-08 0 0 0
Nov-08 100 0 0
Dec-08 300 100 600
Jan-09 800 500 2,000
Feb-09 1,400 1,200 4,100
Mar-09 2,000 3,000 9,900
Apr-09 2,000 3,500 10,800
May-09 2,300 4,800 14,200
Jun-09 3,000 8,000 22,000
Jul-09 3,300 8,600 23,100
Aug-09 3,100 8,700 21,200
Sep-09 3,100 8,400 21,100
Oct-09 3,600 8,600 23,000
Nov-09 3,800 9,300 24,000
Dec-09 3,300 8,100 19,000
Jan-10 3,300 8,600 22,500
Feb-10 3,600 9,300 23,700
Mar-10 4,100 10,400 26,400
Apr-10 3,300 9,100 22,000
May-10 3,400 9,700 23,700
Jun-10 4,000 10,500 27,400
Total 53,600 130,500 340,700

The table below shows the number of appeals heard to date by month of hearing. Figures are rounded to the nearest hundred.

Month of MOJ hearing Appealed Fit for work-appellant successful Appealed Fit for Work-DWP Decision Upheld
Oct-08
Nov-08
Dec-08
Jan-09
Feb-09
Mar-09 0 0
Apr-09 0 100
May-09 100 200
Jun-09 200 500
Jul-09 500 1,000
Aug-09 700 1,500
Sep-09 1,100 2,200
Oct-09 1,500 2,900
Nov-09 2,300 3,700
Dec-09 2,100 3,100
Jan-10 2,700 4,000
Feb-10 2,900 4,400
Mar-10 3,400 5,300
Apr-10 3,000 4,400
May-10 3,100 4,700
Jun-10 3,300 5,100
Total 26,800 42,900

Claims showing as 'in progress' (ie not assessed and not closed) are presented by month of claim start in the table below.

Month of claim start In Progress
Oct-08 100
Nov-08 400
Dec-08 400
Jan-09 600
Feb-09 700
Mar-09 800
Apr-09 800
May-09 900
Jun-09 1,100
Jul-09 1,200
Aug-09 1,200
Sep-09 1,500
Oct-09 1,900
Nov-09 2,400
Dec-09 2,400
Jan-10 3,900
Feb-10 5,200
Mar-10 8,000
Apr-10 10,200
May-10 14,600
Jun-10 26,200
Total 84,400

The tables in this response are extracted from an internal database which combines data from three main sources:

benefit claims data held by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP);functional assessment data sourced from Atos Healthcare; andappeals data sourced from Tribunals Service covering appeals heard up to August 2010 (and which link to ESA claims up to the end of August 2009).

Note that data from Tribunals Service does not record the reason for the appeal and we must infer this from the original decision on the case made by Jobcentre Plus. This is typically a fit for work decision

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