Universal Credit

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 21st May 2020.

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Photo of Baroness Boycott Baroness Boycott Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many households with children are currently receiving Universal Credit as well as legacy benefits; and what proportion of those cannot fully benefit from the recent £1,000 increase in Universal Credit as that increase pushed them over the limit of the total amount of benefit they are allowed to receive.

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

The information requested is not readily available and to provide a reply would require us to produce new analysis to link together several complex datasets, including Child Benefit data which is administered by HMRC, to identify if a household would have a benefit income above the cap levels due to increases in their UC award alone (independent of increases to Local Housing Allowance and CPI uprating of working age benefits). We would also need to identify if the household would otherwise be exempt from the benefit cap. This includes assessing whether or not a household has earnings over the earnings threshold, currently £604 per assessment period, is in receipt of an exempting benefit e.g. Personal Independence Payments, Carer’s Allowance etc. or is eligible for a grace period due to previous earnings. It is estimated that the time this would take to produce and quality assure the results would be in excess of 4 working days and therefore would incur disproportionate costs.

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