Welfare Reform Bill (HC Bill 197)

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General

87 Abolition of disability living allowance

Sections 71 to 76 of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992

(disability living allowance) are repealed.

88 5Amendments

Schedule 9 contains amendments relating to this Part.

89 Power to make supplementary and consequential provision

(1) The Secretary of State may by regulations make such consequential,

supplementary or incidental provision in relation to any provision of this Part

10as the Secretary of State considers appropriate.

(2) The Scottish Ministers may by regulations make such consequential,

supplementary or incidental provision in relation to any provision of this Part

as they consider appropriate, subject to subsection (3).

(3) The Scottish Ministers may only make provision under subsection (2) which

15would be within the legislative competence of the Scottish Parliament if it were

contained in an Act of that Parliament.

(4) Regulations under this section may—

(a) amend, repeal or revoke any primary or secondary legislation passed

or made before the day on which this Act is passed, or

(b) 20amend or repeal any provision of an Act passed on or after that day but

in the same session of Parliament.

(5) In this section—

(a) “primary legislation” means an Act or Act of the Scottish Parliament;

(b) “secondary legislation” means any instrument made under primary

25legislation.

90 Transitional

(1) Regulations may make such provision as the Secretary of State considers

necessary or expedient in connection with the coming into force of any

provision of this Part.

(2) 30Schedule 10 (transitional provision for introduction of personal independence

payment) has effect.

91 Regulations

(1) Regulations under this Part are to be made by the Secretary of State, unless

otherwise provided.

(2) 35A power to make regulations under this Part may be exercised—

(a) so as to make different provision for different cases or purposes;

(b) in relation to all or only some of the cases or purposes for which it may

be exercised.

(3) Such a power includes—

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(a) power to make incidental, supplementary, consequential or

transitional provision or savings;

(b) power to provide for a person to exercise a discretion in dealing with

any matter.

(4) 5The power under subsection (2)(a) includes, in particular, power to make

different provision for persons of different ages.

(5) Regulations made under this Part by the Secretary of State are to be made by

statutory instrument.

(6) A statutory instrument containing (whether alone or with other provision)

10either or both of the following—

(a) the first regulations under section 78;

(b) the first regulations under that section containing provision about

assessment of persons under the age of 16,

may not be made unless a draft of the instrument has been laid before, and

15approved by a resolution of, each House of Parliament.

(7) Any other statutory instrument containing regulations under this Part is

subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of

Parliament.

(8) Regulations made by the Scottish Ministers under section 89 are subject to—

(a) 20the affirmative procedure, if they contain provision amending or

repealing primary legislation (within the meaning of that section), and

(b) the negative procedure, in any other case.

92 Interpretation of Part 4

In this Part—

  • 25“daily living activities” has the meaning given by section 76(4);

  • “daily living component” means the daily living component of personal

    independence payment;

  • “mobility activities” has the meaning given by section 77(4);

  • “mobility component” means the mobility component of personal

    30independence payment;

  • “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations.

Part 5 Social security: general

Benefit cap

93 35Benefit cap

(1) Regulations may provide for a benefit cap to be applied to the welfare benefits

to which a single person or couple is entitled.

(2) For the purposes of this section, applying a benefit cap to welfare benefits

means securing that, where a single person’s or couple’s total entitlement to

40welfare benefits in respect of the reference period exceeds the relevant amount,

their entitlement to welfare benefits in respect of any period of the same

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duration as the reference period is reduced by an amount up to or equalling the

excess.

(3) In subsection (2) the “reference period” means a period of a prescribed

duration.

(4) 5Regulations under this section may in particular—

(a) make provision as to the manner in which total entitlement to welfare

benefits for any period, or the amount of any reduction, is to be

determined;

(b) make provision as to the welfare benefit or benefits from which a

10reduction is to be made;

(c) provide for exceptions to the application of the benefit cap;

(d) make provision as to the intervals at which the benefit cap is to be

applied;

(e) make provision as to the relationship between application of the benefit

15cap and any other reduction in respect of a welfare benefit;

(f) provide that where in consequence of a change in the relevant amount,

entitlement to a welfare benefit increases or decreases, that increase or

decrease has effect without any further decision of the Secretary of

State;

(g) 20make supplementary and consequential provision.

(5) In this section the “relevant amount” is an amount specified in regulations.

(6) The amount specified under subsection (5) is to be determined by reference to

estimated average earnings.

(7) In this section “estimated average earnings” means the amount which, in the

25opinion of the Secretary of State, represents at any time the average weekly

earnings of a working household in Great Britain after deductions in respect of

tax and national insurance contributions.

(8) The Secretary of State may estimate such earnings in such manner as the

Secretary of State thinks fit.

(9) 30Regulations under this section may not provide for any reduction to be made

from a welfare benefit—

(a) provision for which is within the legislative competence of the Scottish

Parliament;

(b) provision for which is within the legislative competence of the National

35Assembly for Wales;

(c) provision for which is made by the Welsh Ministers, the First Minister

for Wales or the Counsel General to the Welsh Assembly Government.

(10) In this section—

  • “couple” means two persons of a prescribed description;

  • 40“prescribed” means prescribed in regulations;

  • “regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State;

  • “single person” means a person who is not a member of a couple;

  • “welfare benefit” means any prescribed benefit, allowance, payment or

    credit.

(11) 45Regulations under subsection (10) may not prescribe as welfare benefits—

(a) state pension credit under the State Pension Credit Act 2002, or

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(b) retirement pensions under Part 2 or 3 of the Social Security

Contributions and Benefits Act 1992.

94 Benefit cap: supplementary

(1) Regulations under section 93 may make different provision for different

5purposes or cases.

(2) Regulations under section 93 must be made by statutory instrument.

(3) A statutory instrument containing regulations under section 93 is subject to

annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(4) In section 150 of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 (annual up-rating

10of benefits) after subsection (7) there is inserted—

(7A) The Secretary of State—

(a) shall in each tax year review the amount specified under

subsection (5) of section 93 of the Welfare Reform Act 2011

(benefit cap) to determine whether its relationship with

15estimated average earnings (within the meaning of that section)

has changed, and

(b) after that review, may, if the Secretary of State considers it

appropriate, include in the draft of an up-rating order provision

increasing or decreasing that amount.

(5) 20In Schedule 2 to the Social Security Act 1998 (decisions against which no appeal

lies) after paragraph 8 there is inserted—

Reduction on application of benefit cap

8A A decision to apply the benefit cap in accordance with regulations

under section 93 of the Welfare Reform Act 2011.

25Claims and awards

95 Claims and awards

(1) Section 5(1) of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 (regulations about

claims and payments) is amended as follows.

(2) In paragraph (d) (conditional awards), for the words from “the condition” to

30the end there is substituted—

(i) the condition that the requirements for entitlement are

satisfied at a prescribed time after the making of the

award, or

(ii) other prescribed conditions;.

(3) 35In paragraph (e), for “those requirements” there is substituted “the conditions

referred to in paragraph (d)”.

(4) In paragraph (g) (claims made on behalf of another), after “applies” there is

inserted “(including in particular, in the case of a benefit to be claimed by

persons jointly, enabling one person to claim for such persons jointly)”.

(5) 40In paragraph (j) (notice of change of circumstances etc), at the end there is

inserted “or of any other change of circumstance of a prescribed description”.

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96 Powers to require information relating to claims and awards

(1) Section 5 of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 (regulations about

claims and payments) is amended as follows.

(2) In subsection (1), paragraphs (h) and (hh) (powers to make provision requiring

5the furnishing of information or evidence) are repealed.

(3) After that subsection there is inserted—

(1A) Regulations may make provision for requiring a person of a prescribed

description to supply any information or evidence which is, or could

be, relevant to—

(a) 10a claim or award relating to a benefit to which this section

applies, or

(b) potential claims or awards relating to such a benefit.

(4) Subsection (3A) is repealed.

(5) In section 22 of the Social Security Act 1998 (suspension for failure to furnish

15information etc), in subsection (3), for “subsection (1)(hh) of section 5” there is

substituted “section 5(1A)”.

Payments

97 Payments to joint claimants

In section 5 of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 (regulations about

20claims and payments), after subsection (3A) there is inserted—

(3B) The power in subsection (1)(i) above to make provision for the person

to whom a benefit is to be paid includes, in the case of a benefit awarded

to persons jointly, power to make provision for the Secretary of State to

determine to which of them all or any part of a payment should be

25made, and in particular for the Secretary of State—

(a) to determine that payment should be made to whichever of

those persons they themselves nominate, or

(b) to determine that payment should be made to one of them

irrespective of any nomination by them.

98 30Payments on account

(1) In section 5(1) of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 (regulations

about claims and payments), for paragraph (r) there is substituted—

(r) for the making of a payment on account of such a benefit—

(i) in cases where it is impracticable for a claim to be made

35or determined immediately, or for an award to be

determined or paid in full immediately,

(ii) in cases of need, or

(iii) in cases where the Secretary of State considers in

accordance with prescribed criteria that the payment

40can reasonably be expected to be recovered;.

(2) Section 22 of the Welfare Reform Act 2009 (payments on account), which has

not been brought into force, is repealed.

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Appeals

99 Power to require consideration of revision before appeal

(1) The Social Security Act 1998 is amended as follows.

(2) In section 12 (appeals to First-tier Tribunal), in subsection (2)—

(a) 5the words from “in relation to” to the end become paragraph (a), and

(b) after that paragraph there is inserted “, or

(b) where regulations under subsection (3A) so provide.

(3) After subsection (3) of that section there is inserted—

(3A) Regulations may provide that, in such cases or circumstances as may be

10prescribed, there is a right of appeal under subsection (2) in relation to

a decision only if the Secretary of State has considered whether to revise

the decision under section 9.

(3B) The regulations may in particular provide that that condition is met

only where—

(a) 15the consideration by the Secretary of State was on an

application,

(b) the Secretary of State considered issues of a specified

description, or

(c) the consideration by the Secretary of State satisfied any other

20condition specified in the regulations.

(3C) The references in subsections (3A) and (3B) to regulations and to the

Secretary of State are subject to any enactment under or by virtue of

which the functions under this Chapter are transferred to or otherwise

made exercisable by a person other than the Secretary of State.

(4) 25In subsection (7) of that section—

(a) the words from “make provision” to the end become paragraph (a);

(b) after that paragraph there is inserted—

(b) provide that, where in accordance with regulations

under subsection (3A) there is no right of appeal against

30a decision, any purported appeal may be treated as an

application for revision under section 9.

(5) In section 80(1)(a) (affirmative procedure for certain regulations) after “12(2)”

there is inserted “or (3A)”.

(6) Schedule 11 contains similar amendments to other Acts.

(7) 35Subsection (8) applies where regulations under a provision mentioned in

subsection (9) are made so as to have effect in relation to a limited area (by

virtue of provision made under section 139(4)(b)).

(8) Any power to make, in connection with those regulations, provision as

respects decisions and appeals may be exercised so that that provision applies

40only in relation to the area mentioned in subsection (7).

(9) The provisions referred to in subsection (7) are—

(a) section 12(3A) of the Social Security Act 1998;

(b) section 4(1B) of the Vaccine Damage Payments Act 1979;

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(c) subsection (2A) of section 20 of the Child Support Act 1991 (as

substituted by section 10 of the Child Support, Pensions and Social

Security Act 2000);

(d) subsection (3A) of section 20 of the Child Support Act 1991 (as it has

5effect apart from section 10 of the Child Support, Pensions and Social

Security Act 2000);

(e) section 11(2A) of the Social Security (Recovery of Benefits) Act 1997;

(f) paragraph 6(5A) of Schedule 7 to the Child Support, Pensions and

Social Security Act 2000;

(g) 10section 50(1A) of the Child Maintenance and Other Payments Act 2008.

100 Supersession of decisions of former appellate bodies

(1) Schedule 12 contains amendments reinstating powers to make decisions

superseding decisions made by appellate bodies before their functions were

transferred to the First-tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal.

(2) 15The following have effect as if they had come into force on 3 November 2008—

(a) the amendments made by Schedule 12, and

(b) if regulations made in the exercise of the powers conferred by virtue of

those amendments so provide, those regulations.

Electronic communications

101 20Electronic communications

(1) In section 189 of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 (regulations and

orders - general), after subsection (5) there is inserted—

(5A) The provision referred to in subsection (5) includes, in a case where

regulations under this Act require or authorise the use of electronic

25communications, provision referred to in section 8(4) and (5) and 9(5)

of the Electronic Communications Act 2000.

(5B) For the purposes of subsection (5A), references in section 8(4) and (5)

and 9(5) of the Electronic Communications Act 2000 to an order under

section 8 of that Act are to be read as references to regulations under

30this Act; and references to anything authorised by such an order are to

be read as references to anything required or authorised by such

regulations.

(2) In section 79 of the Social Security Act 1998 (regulations and orders), after

subsection (6) there is inserted—

(6A) 35The provision referred to in subsection (6) includes, in a case where

regulations under this Act require or authorise the use of electronic

communications, provision referred to in section 8(4) and (5) and 9(5)

of the Electronic Communications Act 2000.

(6B) For the purposes of subsection (6A), references in section 8(4) and (5)

40and 9(5) of the Electronic Communications Act 2000 to an order under

section 8 of that Act are to be read as references to regulations under

this Act; and references to anything authorised by such an order are to

be read as references to anything required or authorised by such

regulations.

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Recovery of benefits

102 Recovery of benefit payments

(1) In the Social Security Administration Act 1992, after section 71ZA there is

inserted—

5Recovery of benefit payments
71ZB Recovery of overpayments of certain benefits

(1) The Secretary of State may recover any amount of the following paid in

excess of entitlement—

(a) universal credit,

(b) 10jobseeker’s allowance,

(c) employment and support allowance, and

(d) except in prescribed circumstances, housing credit (within the

meaning of the State Pension Credit Act 2002).

(2) An amount recoverable under this section is recoverable from—

(a) 15the person to whom it was paid, or

(b) such other person (in addition to or instead of the person to

whom it was paid) as may be prescribed.

(3) An amount paid in pursuance of a determination is not recoverable

under this section unless the determination has been—

(a) 20reversed or varied on an appeal, or

(b) revised or superseded under section 9 or section 10 of the Social

Security Act 1998,

except where regulations otherwise provide.

(4) Regulations may provide that amounts recoverable under this section

25are to be calculated or estimated in a prescribed manner.

(5) Where an amount of universal credit is paid for the sole reason that a

payment by way of prescribed income is made after the date which is

the prescribed date for payment of that income, that amount is for the

purposes of this section paid in excess of entitlement.

(6) 30In the case of a benefit referred to in subsection (1) which is awarded to

persons jointly, an amount paid to one of those persons may for the

purposes of this section be regarded as paid to the other.

(7) An amount recoverable under this section may (without prejudice to

any other means of recovery) be recovered—

(a) 35by deduction from benefit (section 71ZC);

(b) through the courts etc (section 71ZD);

(c) by adjustment of benefit (section 71ZE).

71ZC Deduction from benefit

(1) An amount recoverable from a person under section 71ZB may be

40recovered by deducting the amount from payments of prescribed

benefit to the person.

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(2) Where an amount recoverable from a person under section 71ZB was

paid to the person on behalf of another, subsection (1) authorises its

recovery from the person by deduction—

(a) from prescribed benefits to which the person is entitled,

(b) 5from prescribed benefits paid to the person to discharge (in

whole or in part) an obligation owed to that person by the

person on whose behalf the recoverable amount was paid, or

(c) from prescribed benefits paid to the person to discharge (in

whole or in part) an obligation owed to that person by any other

10person.

(3) Where an amount is recovered as mentioned in paragraph (b) of

subsection (2), the obligation specified in that paragraph shall in

prescribed circumstances be taken to be discharged by the amount of

the deduction.

(4) 15Where an amount is recovered as mentioned in paragraph (c) of

subsection (2), the obligation specified in that paragraph shall in all

cases be taken to be so discharged.

71ZD Court action etc

(1) Where an amount is recoverable under section 71ZB from a person

20residing in England and Wales, the amount is, if a county court so

orders, recoverable—

(a) under section 85 of the County Courts Act 1984, or

(b) otherwise as if it were payable under an order of the court.

(2) Where an amount is recoverable under section 71ZB from a person

25residing in Scotland, the amount recoverable may be enforced as if it

were payable under an extract registered decree arbitral bearing a

warrant for execution issued by the sheriff court of any sheriffdom in

Scotland.

(3) Any costs of the Secretary of State in recovering an amount of benefit

30under this section may be recovered by him as if they were amounts

recoverable under section 71ZB.

(4) In any period after the coming into force of this section and before the

coming into force of section 62 of the Tribunals, Courts and

Enforcement Act 2007, subsection (1)(a) has effect as if it read “by

35execution issued from the county court”.

71ZE Adjustment of benefit

Regulations may for the purpose of the recovery of amounts

recoverable under section 71ZB make provision—

(a) for treating any amount paid to a person under an award which

40it is subsequently determined was not payable—

(i) as properly paid, or

(ii) as paid on account of a payment which it is determined

should be or should have been made,

and for reducing or withholding arrears payable by virtue of the

45subsequent determination;

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(b) for treating any amount paid to one person in respect of another

as properly paid for any period for which it is not payable in

cases where in consequence of a subsequent determination—

(i) the other person is entitled to a payment for that period,

5or

(ii) a third person is entitled in priority to the payee to a

payment for that period in respect of the other person,

and by reducing or withholding any arrears payable for that

period by virtue of the subsequent determination.

71ZF 10 Recovery of payments on account

(1) The Secretary of State may recover any amount paid under section

5(1)(r) (payments on account).

(2) An amount recoverable under this section is recoverable from—

(a) the person to whom it was paid, or

(b) 15such other person (in addition to or instead of the person to

whom it was paid) as may be prescribed.

(3) Regulations may provide that amounts recoverable under this section

are to be calculated or estimated in a prescribed manner.

(4) In the case of a payment on account of a benefit which is awarded to

20persons jointly, an amount paid to one of those persons may for the

purposes of this section be regarded as paid to the other.

(5) Sections 71ZC and 71ZD apply in relation to amounts recoverable

under this section as to amounts recoverable under section 71ZB.

71ZG Recovery of hardship payments etc

(1) 25The Secretary of State may recover any amount paid by way of—

(a) a payment under section 28 of the Welfare Reform Act 2011

(universal credit hardship payments) which is recoverable

under that section,

(b) a payment under section 19C of the Jobseekers Act 1995

30(jobseeker’s allowance hardship payments) which is

recoverable under that section,