Social Security Benefits: Immigrants

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 22nd October 2018.

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Photo of Vicky Foxcroft Vicky Foxcroft Opposition Whip (Commons)

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate her Department has made of the number of benefits claims made by migrants with the right to work in the UK but not in possession of a Biometric Residence Permit in (a) 2015, (b) 2016 and (c) 2017.

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

DWP procedures require non-UK nationals to provide proof of their UK immigration status upon application for an income related benefit. This may be in the form of a Home Office Biometric Residence Permit or a valid passport or visa stamped by the Home Office granting leave to remain and recourse to public funds. Claimants who provide proof of UK immigration status with recourse to claim public funds are eligible to claim DWP income-related benefits on the same basis as UK citizens.

Biometric Residency Permits were introduced by the Home Office in December 2012. As of 31 May 2015 new regulations require non-EEA nationals, seeking permission from overseas to enter the UK for more than six months to apply for a Biometric Residence Permit from the Home Office.

The Department does not centrally collect statistical information categorised by the type of immigration status document provided and the information requested could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

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