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SDP transitional payments. Feeling the pinch.

5imply_Ted5imply_Ted Member Posts: 32 Connected
I have an update related to SDP transitional payments. My landlord recently increased the rent by a substantial amount. This triggered an increase in my Housing Element and has been taken out of my SDP transitional payment. This is how transitional payments work, but it doesn't apply if you receive SDP with a legacy benefit. 

Should an increase in the amount of rent your landlord charges automatically detract from the amount that the DWP awards a person to cover their extra disability needs? After all the hard work that went into fighting for these payments, it's a kick in the teeth to have them chipped away so quickly. 

Leigh Day solicitors are currently bringing claims against the Government for the various caveats that were put in place when these payments were introduced. I would like the support of the Scope community when I suggest to Leigh Day that they ask their Human Rights team to consider writing to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions to suggest that introducing the SDP payments for UC, only for them to then come under transitional rules was a strategy to keep disabled people quiet for a while. However, this will affect all of us who were awarded the payments and the discrimination is stark yet again between those who receive legacy benefits and those who have migrated onto UC. 

The bottom line is that these SDP payments should be brought in line with the Childcare element and be exempt from transition. If the Government intends to strip disabled people of the entitlements they had under legacy benefits, then let them do so under the spotlight, for all to see, as opposed to under the cover of a penny here and a pound there. And let them be opposed while they do so.

I'd be interested to hear people's thoughts/rants/dismissals on this subject below.

Thanks for reading.

Replies

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    If you're privately renting then there's a maximum amount you claim for the housing element depending on your circumstances. If you live a lone then you'll be entitled to the 1 bedroom rate of local housing allowance.

    As your rent has been substantially increased then your housing element might not cover the whole amount which will obviously mean you'll need to put money towards it which will leave you worse off each month.

    Check LHA rates for you area here. https://lha-direct.voa.gov.uk/

    Descretionary housing payment can be claimed from your local council for any shortfall in rent. It's not gauranteed and if it is awarded it's usually for a short amount of time before you have to re-apply. Speak to your local council to ask them for a form.


    Proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice I have given to members here on the community.
  • 5imply_Ted5imply_Ted Member Posts: 32 Connected
    My statement says "Your transitional protection payments have been decreased.

    This is because you are now being paid more Universal Credit."  The only increase in UC has been the increase in rent. My landlord is social housing and after the increase, the amount still falls beneath the 1 bed LHA rate. However, that increase has been subtracted from my SDP transitional payment.

  • woodbinewoodbine Community Co-Production Group Posts: 3,829 Disability Gamechanger
    I always lose interest when i read the phrase "human rights" when discussing benefits like we live in some third world country.
    Rant over !  B)
    my advice is given freely and is correct to the best of my knowledge.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Confirmation of this is here for anyone that wants to read it.

    Reducing and ending transitional protection

    Reduction of amount

    If other elements of a claimant's UC award increase, there will be an equivalent reduction in the transitional element until the transitional element reduces to zero. This may mean that if, for example, a person's rent increases by £15 with a consequent increase in her/his housing cost element, s/he is no better off because of the effect on the transitional element. The only exception is childcare costs: if the amount awarded for these changes, the transitional element will be unaffected.[20]

    Link here. https://england.shelter.org.uk/legal/benefits/universal_credit/migration_and_transitional_protection

    Proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice I have given to members here on the community.
  • 5imply_Ted5imply_Ted Member Posts: 32 Connected
    edited December 2020
    Thanks to Ceri Smith, head of policy and campaigns at Scope for recognising this early and making her voice heard. I am now substantially worse off because of this legislation. I doubt I'll be the last. I'll be contacting my paralegal at Leigh Day to see if anything can be done about it in addition to the ongoing action being taken. Anyone wishing to put their name forward in a show of support, please feel free. Numbers help to grease the wheels in these matters..

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/disability-cuts-coronavirus-universal-credit-benefits-sdp-b993349.html
  • 5imply_Ted5imply_Ted Member Posts: 32 Connected
    Update: Does anyone know if the 20 pounds temporary increase in UC is deducted from the SDP transitional payments? My sums aren't adding up over the rent increase so I'm wondering if this is the case. If so, then If and when the 20 pounds increase is ended, does that amount get reinstated onto the SDP transitional payments?
  • woodbinewoodbine Community Co-Production Group Posts: 3,829 Disability Gamechanger
    I don't think the £20 will be deducted, just reading back through this you say you live in social housing but have had a "substantial"increase in rent which surprises me, was there a reason for that? @5imply_Ted
    my advice is given freely and is correct to the best of my knowledge.
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 1,268 Pioneering
    edited March 1
    Update: Does anyone know if the 20 pounds temporary increase in UC is deducted from the SDP transitional payments? My sums aren't adding up over the rent increase so I'm wondering if this is the case. If so, then If and when the 20 pounds increase is ended, does that amount get reinstated onto the SDP transitional payments?
    To be clear SDP transitional payments were original extra payments that were not subject to erosion. All such payments have now been converted to SDP transitional elements and all new SDP transitional amounts are elements. Elements are subject to erosion.

    I have never seen anything about this but logically (within its own terms) the £87/month uplift would reduce the SDP transitional element.

    I am not aware of any provision for the SDP transitional element to increase again if the reason it was previously reduced is later removed. That would appear to be a potentially very harmful injustice in the context of COVID if the temporary increase has reduced the SDP element.

    Will be interested to hear of anyone has information on this.
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
  • 5imply_Ted5imply_Ted Member Posts: 32 Connected
    edited March 1
    woodbine said:
    I don't think the £20 will be deducted, just reading back through this you say you live in social housing but have had a "substantial"increase in rent which surprises me, was there a reason for that? @5imply_Ted
    Good question @woodbine I should have corrected this when I later found out that in fact, the reason why I thought the increase was so substantial is that the housing association had lumped my parking fees which I pay for separately, in along with the smaller rent increase. UC deducted the lot from my SDP, I subsequently corrected them and now they're still taking too much only not so much as before! That's why I wondered what UC policy was regarding the 20 pounds increase and SDP. I've sent it for a mandatory reconsideration but my case manager keeps saying they haven't received it. I sent it again after checking the UC service address and 8 days later he still won't acknowledge receipt. I'll send it again tomorrow and let him know in my journal that I've done so for the record and that Covid delays notwithstanding, I believe they should've received it by now. I'll put the address I'm sending it to on the journal which has been given to me several times by UC staff and probably (if I can manage to) stop short of accusing him of deliberately delaying this so the time limit on the reconsideration expires.
  • 5imply_Ted5imply_Ted Member Posts: 32 Connected
    Over 2 months and several mandatory consideration submissions later and UC still insist they're yet to receive a written copy of my concerns.
    Leaving the departmental service issues to one side, the answer to my SDP discrepancy question is simply to know whether the Covid UC increase is deducted from SDP transitional element. If so does anyone know what is due to happen when the increase ends?
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 1,268 Pioneering
    edited May 10
    The £20 uplift would not have reduced any transitional element because it is to be disregarded and therefore there will be nothing to correct when it ends.

    https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2021/313/made
    https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2021/313/pdfs/uksiem_20210313_en.pdf
    7.7  Provision has also been made to ensure that the calculation of any Transitional Protection that is awarded to a claimant as part of managed migration is not reduced because of the temporary uplift. By doing so it ensures that any claimant who has moved to UC as part of managed migration will also benefit from this extra financial support. This provision will also apply to claimants who have naturally migrated to UC and are receiving transitional protection as a result of being a former Severe Disability Premium (SDP) recipient.
    and
    https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2020/371/made
    Universal credit – standard allowance modification
    3.—(1) Regulation 36 (table showing amounts of elements) of the Universal Credit Regulations, as amended by article 33 of, and Schedule 13 to, the Social Security Benefits Up-rating Order 2020(8) (“the 2020 up-rating order”) is to be read as if the following amounts were substituted for the amounts of the standard allowance—
    ...
    (3) For the purposes of any calculation under regulation 54 (transitional element - indicative UC amount) and 55 (transitional element – initial amount and adjustment where other elements increase) of the Universal Credit (Transitional Provisions) Regulations 2014(9) the amount of the standard allowance is to be the amount specified in regulation 36 of the Universal Credit Regulations, as amended by the 2020 up-rating order, and paragraph (1) is to be disregarded.

    Hadn't found this when I last posted on 1st March.

    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
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