MSE News: Government moves towards new monthly benefit system

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Benefits & Tax Credits
183 replies 14.5K views
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  • rogerblack wrote: »
    It would be interesting to submit a freedom of information request for payment error stats.

    And the number of people whose benefits are stopped, before they are notified..
    [greenhighlight]but it matters when the most senior politician in the land is happy to use language and examples that are simply not true.
    [/greenhighlight][redtitle]
    The impact of this is to stigmatise people on benefits,
    and we should be deeply worried about that
    [/redtitle](house of lords debate, talking about Cameron)
  • edited 17 September 2011 at 4:36AM
    MuttleythefrogMuttleythefrog Forumite
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    edited 17 September 2011 at 4:36AM
    cit_k wrote: »
    And the number of people whose benefits are stopped, before they are notified..

    I think this would be the most signficant problem with regard the idea of monthly benefit payments. There's been enough people in the threads that I've seen in my short time here regarding ESA alone whereby they have been put in real difficulty because their monies have been stopped and they've not been informed of the relevant decision. If we went to longer periods between payments then such cases would become even worse for those affected as there would be reduced chance to act on the matter. i.e. someone could go for a month expecting benefit money to arrive that they're unaware will not be forthcoming. The DWP needs to start operating like a credible organisation with reliably functioning administrative systems first. It's all well and good expecting people to budget and organise their finances... the problem is the DWP can't be relied upon to make the payments or give benefit information necessary for people to budget and act accordingly. And when things do go wrong it is a minefield of beaurocracy, misinformation, lack of information and buck passing you face to try to get some way forward - this is a world away from getting wages from work and people need to accept that.

    In just one recent thread someone awaiting the result of their WCA suddenly found their money stopped. Money they had no reason to suspect would be stopped since they'd not been given any notifications relevant to the outcome of their WCA (like many). As a result they're left in a dire situation where they go for a long period without any income and cannot get through to anyone at the DWP who can give a direction forward... direct debits were arranged to come out soon after expected benefit payment was due.... that's what they budgeted for. The person in question must've racked up a small fortune in 0845 telephone calls... they would not have been able to afford them had they had to pay as they called. If I recall, eventually they managed to get back onto ESA assessment rate after the DWP finally accepted they'd received an appeal request and a duplicate sicknote.

    I've created a 1 thousand pound buffer in my account to cover me for expected DWP incompetence...lol. That gives me a good 3 months to put them right or find out what's wrong.
    "Do not attribute to conspiracy what can adequately be explained by incompetence" - rogerblack
  • Fiver29Fiver29 Forumite
    18.6K Posts
    Ames wrote: »
    The last time it happened to me on benefits was about a decade ago.


    I really don't get all these arguments about making money stretch a month. You get x amount of money, and it lasts till the next payment day. So why would people need crisis loans or credit cards to get through the month? Surely that's the same if it's paid weekly?

    Arguments about not being able to afford to live on benefits rates are a totally different issue.

    Quoting you, since you quoted Cit_k (I have him on ignore because I cannot abide his rantings).

    When has my pay been late? 3 out of last 5 months, once for 2 days, twice for a week. At the same time one was delayed for a week, my overtime was missed off completely, and I had to wait another month (that's the second time that has happened in the last year too).
    Moving onto a better place...Ciao :wave:
  • What about JSA ? Will we get paid every 4 weeks and signing on every 4 weeks or had to signing on fortnightly and get paid every 4 weeks ?

    I cannot see it will going to work and it won't happen, it just talk and the same universal credit won't happen for next 10 years or might be dead in the water!
  • Sorry for bumping a 2 month old thread but just came across it now, and was going to mention like above.

    What happens to the payments? Would it be monthly in arrears? if so that would be disasterous for many people since how would they be able to buy anything or pay bills.

    My view is that knowing money comes in every 2 weeks is more relaxing than getting paid monthly, whenever I worked or was a student I knew that much of my income would go straight out on bills rather than part every week or two.
  • wouldbeqaulitymoneysaverwouldbeqaulitymoneysaver Forumite
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    This will take some getting used to, i'm used to getting mine every 2 weeks, its easier for me to cope with budgeting for 2 weeks instead of 4 :(
    The 2 week cycle means I can't pay out direct debits when money comes in. Now 4 week cycle.. this government wants to hurt hurt hurt us. Grrrh Chin up!:beer::mad::mad:
    #TY[/B] Would be Qaulity MSE Challenge Queen.
    Reading whatever books I want to the rescue!:money::beer[/B
    WannabeBarrister, WannabeWife, Wannabe Campaign Girl Wannabe MSE Girl #wannnabeALLmyFamilygirl
    #notbackyetIamfightingfortherighttobeMSEandFREE
  • BigAuntyBigAunty Forumite
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    Still scratching my head over the resistance to benefit payments being made in the type of periodic payments common in employment. The smaller the gap between benefit behaviour and employment behaviour, the easier it will be to transition between the two? I agree that delays in payments cause total chaos and it would great to see swifter processing of claims.

    The move from HB to LHA being paid directly to the tenant was implemented precisely to promote personal responsibility for budgeting, financial inclusion, help remove barriers to work.

    So why is it any different in benefit payments mirror much more closely what happens with employees?

    I'm aware what a pain it is to budget standing orders and direct debits with the payment cycles into a bank account. For example, I had around 8 direct debits coming out of my account on the 1st of the month while my employer paid me every 4 weeks. As there's 13 weeks in a 3 monthly period, it meant very little correspondence between pay dates and my major bills. So I had to pay closer attention to my finances but that's life.
  • BigAunty,

    I think the resistance is being met because DWP often make mistakes with payments and the biggest mistake is non-payment when there was no reason for the non-payment. I've had this happen to me (I think) three times in 18 months with no change in circumstances at all. If a payment was missed by them then the claimant would have to wait 4 weeks rather than just 2 at the moment.

    Ideally everyone would have enough savings to cover that period if/when it comes up, but the reality is that with universal credit covering housing payments as well as JSA/ESA, it could make some landlords quite unhappy and then unwilling to take on future benefit claimants as tenants.
  • BigAuntyBigAunty Forumite
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    moose1982 wrote: »
    BigAunty,

    I think the resistance is being met because DWP often make mistakes with payments and the biggest mistake is non-payment when there was no reason for the non-payment. ...

    I'd hope under the new system there would be a way to re-instate a missing payment with immediate effect rather than wait an entire payment period (or an effort to prevent a mistake in the first place..).

    If/when UC comes in, at least a household will get a single payment, instead of the way that many get staggered HB, IS, CTC, CB, etc.
  • BigAunty wrote: »
    I'd hope under the new system there would be a way to re-instate a missing payment with immediate effect rather than wait an entire payment period (or an effort to prevent a mistake in the first place..).

    If/when UC comes in, at least a household will get a single payment, instead of the way that many get staggered HB, IS, CTC, CB, etc.

    I think that everyone would like payments to not be missed at all (wouldn't we all, in work even with wages and overtime/expenses), but the reality is that it will happen at some point. A quick payment would be ideal of course, but with the staggered payments, a claimant can currently juggle money around a bit.

    I, like you (because I'm sure you feel the same), hope this UC means that less mistakes are made and will ensure everyone gets what they do deserve.

    Maybe some are also doubting the probability of the government to get an IT system which actually works as well, because we all know how they often turn out :angry:
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