Important Welfare Reform Changes
There have been a number of changes since April 2013 due to the Government’s Welfare Reform Act. Below we’ve listed some of the recent changes and some that are due to happen soon.
If you need more information about any of these changes, please visit GOV.UK, which provides a wide range of information on public services.
If you are affected by any of these changes and are having trouble paying your rent, you may be able to get a discretionary housing payment. Please see our Discretionary Housing Payment page.
You may also be able to get additional support from the Local Welfare Provision scheme (see below), if you need help with food and/or essential items.
In July 2013, the Government introduced a “cap” (maximum limit) to the total amount of benefit that working age people can receive if they aren’t working.
For more information, please see our Benefit Cap page.
Removal of the Spare Room Subsidy
In April 2013, the Government introduced new rules regarding the number of bedrooms housing benefit will pay for if you rent your home. This is called “removal of the spare room subsidy” but is more commonly known as “bedroom tax”.
For more information, please see our Housing Benefit page.
Local Welfare Provision
In 2013, the Social Fund was abolished and the Department for Work and Pensions no longer provides payments under this.
In April 2013, Birmingham City Council introduced a Local Welfare Provision Scheme. There are no cash payments made through this discretionary scheme and it is not intended to replicate the previous Social Fund scheme.
For more information, please see our Local Welfare Provision page.
Personal Independence Payments
As part of the Government’s Welfare Reform, Personal Independence Payments replaced Disability Living Allowance for all new claimants from April 2013.
Existing claimants will be reassessed on an area by area basis. For more information, please see the Personal Independence Payment pages on GOV.UK.
Universal Credit will be rolled out to jobseekers across the UK by Spring 2015. People in receipt of Universal Credit are NOT eligible for housing benefit.
For more information, please see the Universal Credit pages on GOV.UK.
For information related to the roll out of Universal Credit in Birmingham, please see Welfare Reform - Universal Credit.