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Income Support: Disabled

Volume 479: debated on Thursday 17 July 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the Answer of 2 July 2008, Official Report, columns 890-1W, on income support: disabled, if he will investigate the reasons for the inability of a constituent of the hon. Member for Torbay to receive income support with disability element on a weekly basis. (217727)

Jobcentre Plus wrote to the hon. Member on 30 June 2008 explaining what action his constituent needed to take to receive weekly payments of income support. The situation has now been rectified and the constituent is receiving their income support weekly.

It has been brought to my attention that the reply I gave the hon. Member for Torbay, on 2 July 2008, Official Report, columns 890-1W, incorrectly stated that all claims to income support are paid weekly, the answer should have read as follows. I apologise for this oversight.

Most claims to income support are paid on a weekly basis in arrears. However, income support paid on the grounds of incapacity for work is generally paid fortnightly in arrears (except where the case has been continuous since before April 1995). Customers receiving income support with widows or bereavement benefit are normally paid in advance.

From April 2009 all new claims to income support will be paid fortnightly in arrears in line with employment and support allowance (ESA) which will be introduced in October 2008.

Weekly payments will be considered in exceptional circumstances and for up to 26 weeks. A customer’s disability would not, of itself, justify weekly payment.