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Transition from Universal Credit to State Pension

Volume 678: debated on Monday 29 June 2020

What steps her Department is taking to ensure an effective transition between universal credit and the state pension. (903876)

The Government announced in March that anyone reaching state pension age while claiming universal credit will be eligible for a run-on until the end of the assessment period in which they reach state pension age. An estimated 200,000 people will benefit from this measure over the next five years, receiving on average an additional £350 each. I am pleased to confirm that regulations are being laid today to put this measure on a statutory footing.

In November 2017, my constituent Caroll Nash visited my advice surgery and told me about a shortfall of £530 as a consequence of transitioning from universal credit to the state pension. Her claim ended on 17 October in anticipation of her receipt of the state pension from 6 November. At that time, no facility for a part-payment was available, although we did manage to resolve the issue. Can the Minister confirm that, as a consequence of the test-and-learn approach that his Department has taken in respect of universal credit, that claimant’s circumstances today would result in a seamless transition?

I thank my hon. Friend for his question. He is right, and I am pleased to confirm that everyone who reaches state pension age while on universal credit will be eligible for the new run-on payment. That will mean no gap in benefit provision as people transition from universal credit to the pension-age benefit system.