Universal Credit

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 29th January 2019.

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Photo of Baroness Lister of Burtersett Baroness Lister of Burtersett Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the answer by the Minister of State for Employment on 8 January (HC Deb, col 181), what is meant by “testing a non-mandatory approach” in regard to the pilot of managed migration to Universal Credit.

Photo of Baroness Buscombe Baroness Buscombe The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The Government will conduct a pilot phase for the migration of 10,000 claimants from legacy benefits onto Universal Credit. The aim of this pilot is to ensure that claimants on legacy benefits, with a range of differing characteristics, can be successfully and smoothly moved on to Universal Credit.

The Department is currently working closely with a wide and diverse range of stakeholders to design a pilot process of moving to Universal Credit for those legacy benefit claimants who do not move to Universal Credit following a change in circumstances. Several of our stakeholders have encouraged us to consider a voluntary approach to migrating claimants onto Universal Credit in the first instance, and we are committed to trialling this in the pilot, along with other approaches. This non-mandatory approach would involve engagement with claimants to discuss the benefits of Universal Credit for them. Claimants who chose not to voluntarily move onto Universal Credit as part of this initial piloting approach will remain on their existing benefit during the piloting processes.

The Department has committed to ensure that every single claimant who is moved on to Universal Credit by the Department can access Universal Credit smoothly and receive the support they need during the transition. The Government has already committed to reporting on our findings from the pilot before bringing forward legislation to deliver a wider migration process.

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