§ Earl Russell
asked Her Majesty's Government:
What measures they have introduced since 1986 to disentitle people to means-tested social security benefits to which their means would otherwise have entitled them, under the following headings:
- (a) measures disentitling a category of people, regardless of any personal misconduct.
- (b) measures creating a power of total disentitlement as a penalty for personal misconduct.
- (c) measures creating a power to impose a deduction from benefit as a penalty for personal misconduct.
§ The Minister of State, Department of Social Security (Lord Mackay of Ardbrecknish)
The measures are:
(a) Housing benefit for students in halls of residence withdrawn.
The Housing Benefits Amendment (No. 3) Regulations 1986 (SI 1986 No. 1009).
Supplementary benefit for students limited to the summer vacation.
Supplementary Benefit (Requirements and Resources) Miscellaneous Amendment Regulations 1986 (SI 1986/1293).
A person who is a member of, and is fully maintained by, a religious order is treated as not liable to make payments in respect of a dwelling and is therefore not entitled to housing benefit.
The Housing Benefit (General) Regulations 1987 (SI 1987/1971).3WA
16/17 year-olds disentitled to income support except in certain vulnerable groups and in cases of severe hardship.
The Social Security Act 1988 (Section 4) (Chapter 7).
From the start of the 1990/91 academic year the majority of full-time students were excluded from income support and housing benefit—exceptions were made for students in prescribed vulnerable groups, including disabled students and students with dependent children.
The Social Security Benefits (Student Loans and Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 1990 (SI 1990 No. 1549).
Care in the community provisions—removed entitlement to housing benefit for all new residents entering registered residential accommodation on or after 1 April 1993.
The Social Security Benefits (Amendments Consequential Upon the Introduction of Community Care) Regulations 1992 (SI 1994 No. 3147).
Habitual residence, rights residence directives and immigration status tests—restrict access to housing benefit of persons entering the United Kingdom from abroad. Immigration status test—April 1994.
The Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit (Amendment) Regulations 1994 (SI 1994 No. 470).
Habitual residence and rights of residence directive tests—August 1994.
The Income-related Benefits Schemes (Miscellaneous Amendments) (No. 3) Regulations 1994 (SI 1994 No. 1807).
Persons required by the Secretary of State to leave the United Kingdom disentitled to income support [effective from 12 April 1993].
Income-related Benefits Schemes (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 1993 (SI 1993 No. 315).
Persons from abroad who sought to vary their leave or to regularise their position after overstaying their leave disentitled to income support at the urgent cases rate [effective from 2 August 1993].
Income Support (General) Amendment No. 3 Regulations 1993 (SI 1993 No. 1679).
Persons who are not habitually resident in the United Kingdom, the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands or the Irish Republic [effective from 1 August 1994]
Income-related Benefits Schemes (Miscellaneous Amendments) (No. 3) Regulations 1994 (SI 1994 No. 1807).
(b) The "actively seeking work" hardship provision.
Income Support (General) Amendment No.3 Regulations 1992 (SI 1992 No. 2804).4WA
(c) Increase in the maximum period of disqualification for voluntary unemployment from 6 to 13 weeks.
Social Security Act 1986 (Section 43) (Chapter 50).
Increase in the maximum period of disqualification for voluntary unemployment from 13 to 26 weeks.
Income Support (General) Amendment Regulations 1988 (SI 1988 No. 633).
The "actively seeking work" test. Income support at a reduced rate can be paid to avoid hardship.
Income Support (General) Amendment No 2 Regulations 1989 (SI 1989 No. 1323).
Reductions in income support for failure to attend or complete a Restart course—
Income Support (General and Transitional) Amendment Regulations 1990 (1990/2324).
Reduction in benefit equal to 20 per cent. of the income support adult personal allowance (over 25 rate) for 6 months; then 10 per cent. for a further 12 months where parents with care refuse to co-operate in seeking child support maintenance in cases where there is no risk of harm or undue distress occurring to them or any children living with them.
Child Support Act 1991 Sections 6 and 46, as amended by the Child Support (Maintenance Assessment Procedure) Regulations 1992, (SI 1992/1813).
Reduction of benefit for failure to co-operate in seeking child support maintenance also applies to:
Family Credit (General) Regulations 1987 Reg 51A (SI 1987/1973) as amended by the Income-related Benefits Schemes (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 1993, (SI 1993/315)
and to disability working allowance:
The Disability Working Allowance (General) Regulations 1991 (SI 1991/2887) as amended by the Income-related Benefits Schemes (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 1993, (SI 1993/315).
Reductions in income support for failure to attend or complete a Jobplan workshop.
The Income Support (General) Regulations 1987 Regulation 21A, as amended by the Income-related Benefits Schemes (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 1993, (SI 1993/315).