Universal Credit: Overpayments

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 7th March 2018.

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Photo of Ruth George Ruth George Labour, High Peak

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many universal credit claimants are re-paying benefit overpayments; what the (a) mean and (b) median value is of those overpayments; and what the average period is for those benefit payments to be recovered in the most recent period for which figures are available.

Photo of Alok Sharma Alok Sharma The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions

The Department has a duty to protect public funds and has an obligation to ensure that in accordance with social security legislation, any overpayment of benefit resulting from a claimants error or fraud is recovered.

There were 40,521 Universal Credit claimants who had a deduction from their Universal Credit as a recovery against a benefit overpayment (which related to their legacy benefits) within the last 31 days (in January 2018 the Universal Credit caseload was 730,000).

The mean value of the outstanding balances is £1,082.50 and the median figure is £332.55.

The information to provide the average recovery period will often fluctuate over time dependent on a claimant’s particular circumstances.

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