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Universal Credit

Question for Department for Work and Pensions

UIN HL4517, tabled on 14 May 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of the deployment of staff to address Universal Credit claims on the average times taken to process disability benefit claims and appeals.

Answered on

29 May 2020

The latest published Personal Independence Payment statistics, which cover the period April 2013 to January 2020 are published on the Department for Work and Pensions statistics webpages. The tables below show the average actual clearance times covering the period January 2019 to January 2020 for claimants under a) normal rules (table 1), and b) special rules for terminal illness (table 2); Data covering the period April 2013 to April 2020 will be published on June 11th. Appeal clearance times from the date lodged to the date of disposal are published by the Ministry of Justice, and show that the mean clearance time for Personal Independence Payment appeals was 32 weeks in the period October to December 2019.

We continue to monitor processing times across the different benefits to ensure that eligible claimants receive the financial support they are entitled to in a timely manner.

Table 1: PIP Average Actual Clearance Times (Median number of weeks) - Normal Rules

Great Britain

(January 2019 - 31st January 2020)

(i) Registration to issue of Part 2

(ii) Issue of Part 2 to return of Part 2

(iii) Referral to AP to return from AP

(iv) Return from AP to DWP decision

(v) Registration to DWP decision
(end to end)

(vi) Referral to AP to DWP decision
(end to end)

New Claims

Jan-19

0

4

7

2

15

10

Feb-19

0

4

7

2

15

10

Mar-19

0

4

6

2

15

9

Apr-19

0

4

6

2

13

9

May-19

0

5

7

3

14

10

Jun-19

0

5

6

3

16

11

Jul-19

0

4

5

4

16

10

Aug-19

0

5

5

4

16

9

Sep-19

0

5

5

3

15

9

Oct-19

0

5

6

2

14

8

Nov-19

0

5

6

2

15

8

Dec-19

0

6

7

3

17

10

Jan-20

0

5

8

5

19

12

DLA Reassessments

Jan-19

0

4

7

8

20

15

Feb-19

0

4

8

5

17

12

Mar-19

0

4

6

2

16

10

Apr-19

0

4

4

2

12

7

May-19

0

5

4

3

12

7

Jun-19

0

5

3

3

12

7

Jul-19

0

4

5

3

13

7

Aug-19

0

5

5

4

14

9

Sep-19

0

5

6

5

16

11

Oct-19

0

5

7

6

17

12

Nov-19

0

5

7

6

19

13

Dec-19

0

6

8

6

20

13

Jan-20

0

5

10

8

23

15

Source: PIP Computer System claimant records.

Notes:

1. Figures have been rounded to the nearest whole number of weeks.

2. The status of claims as 'normal rules' and 'new claim/reassessment' is shown as at the point of issue of the Part2/return of the Part2/return from the AP/DWP decision, in accordance with the measure. It is possible for claims to transition between normal/special rules and new claims/reassessments during the course of the claimant journey.

3. The figures in the table are the average clearance time of claims cleared within that calendar month.

4. The median time is the middle value if you were to order all the times within the distribution from lowest value to highest value. The median is presented here instead of the mean because the mean can be unduly affected by outlying cases (e.g. cases where the person has been hard to reach due to being in prison, hospital, failed to attend the assessment on numerous occasions etc.)

5. The 'Registration to issue of Part 2' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date of registration of the claim (i.e. the date of the PIP 1 registration phone call) and the date the Part 2 form is sent to the claimant. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant during this phase or claims that were disallowed prior to the issue of the Part 2 form because of failure to meet basic eligibility criteria.

6. The 'Issue of Part 2 to return of Part 2' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date the Part 2 form is sent to the claimant and the date the form is received back by the Department. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant during this phase or claims that were disallowed because the Part 2 form was not returned within the time limit.

7. The 'Referral to AP to return from AP' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date of referral to the Assessment Provider and the date of return of the Assessment Provider’s recommendation to DWP. This is a proxy for the length of time the claimant has waited for an assessment, because data on the dates that assessments took place is not held by DWP. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant during this phase or claims that were returned to DWP without a report and disallowed because the claimant failed to attend the assessment without good reason.

Note: the new claims data given for this measure is slightly different from the data previously published within the ad hoc statistical release of 28th January 2015. This is because the measure published in the ad hoc included all claims that were no longer outstanding with the Assessment Providers and hence included claims that were withdrawn by the claimant during this phase or claims that were returned to DWP without a report and were disallowed because the claimant failed to attend the assessment without good reason.

8. The 'Return from AP to DWP decision' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date of return of the Assessment Provider’s recommendation to DWP and the date of the DWP decision to either award or disallow the claim. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant during this phase or claims that were returned to DWP without a report and disallowed because the claimant failed to attend without good reason.

9. The 'Registration to DWP decision (end to end)' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date of registration of the claim and the date of the DWP decision to either award or disallow the claim. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant or claims that were disallowed by DWP pre-referral to the Assessment Providers (e.g. for failure to meet basic eligibility criteria or failure to return the Part 2 form within the time limit).

10. The 'Referral to AP to DWP decision (end to end)' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date of referral to the Assessment Providers and the date of the DWP decision to either award or disallow the claim. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant or claims that were disallowed by DWP pre-referral to the Assessment Providers (e.g. for failure to meet basic eligibility criteria or failure to return the Part 2 form within the time limit).

11. Note: the individual parts of the claimant journey average times may not sum to the end to end claimant journey average times. This is because each measure is based on the median clearance time of cases cleared at that stage, while the end to end measure is based on the median clearance time for all cleared cases. As the size and distributions of clearance times for the individual stages will vary, the sum of the individual medians will not sum to the end to end median.

12. '-' Fewer than 50 claims in this category.

13. Great Britain only.

Table 2: PIP Average Actual Clearance Times (Median number of working days) - Special Rules

(January 2019 - 31st January 2020)

Registration to referral to the AP

Referral to AP to return from AP

Return from AP to DWP decision

Registration to DWP decision (end to end)

New Claims

Jan-19

4

1

1

5

Feb-19

4

1

1

5

Mar-19

4

1

1

5

Apr-19

4

1

1

6

May-19

4

1

1

6

Jun-19

4

1

1

6

Jul-19

4

1

1

6

Aug-19

5

1

1

6

Sep-19

4

1

1

6

Oct-19

4

1

1

6

Nov-19

4

1

1

5

Dec-19

4

1

1

6

Jan-20

4

1

1

5

DLA Reassessments

Jan-19

5

1

3

7

Feb-19

4

1

3

6

Mar-19

4

1

2

6

Apr-19

4

1

2

6

May-19

3

1

2

6

Jun-19

3

1

2

6

Jul-19

2

1

3

6

Aug-19

1

1

2

5

Sep-19

3

1

3

6

Oct-19

4

1

3

6

Nov-19

5

1

5

8

Dec-19

5

1

5

6

Jan-20

4

1

3

7

Source: PIP Computer System claimant records.

Notes:

1. Figures have been rounded to the nearest working day, i.e. Monday to Friday (including bank holidays).

2. The status of claims as 'special rules' and 'new claim/reassessment' is shown as at the point of referral to the AP/return from the AP/DWP decision, in accordance with the measure. It is possible for claims to transition between normal/special rules and new claims/reassessments during the course of the claimant journey.

3. The figures in the table are the average clearance time of claims cleared within that calendar month.

4. The median time is the middle value if you were to order all the times within the distribution from lowest value to highest value. The median is presented here instead of the mean because the mean can be unduly affected by outlying cases (e.g. cases were the person has been hard to reach due to being in prison, hospital, failed to attend the assessment on numerous occasions etc.)

5. The 'Registration to referral to the AP' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date of registration of the claim and the date of the referral to the Assessment Provider. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant or claims that were disallowed by DWP pre-referral to the Assessment Providers (e.g. for failure to meet basic eligibility criteria).

6. The 'Referral to AP to return from AP' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date of referral to the assessment providers and the date of return of the Assessment Provider’s recommendation to DWP. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant during this phase.

8. The 'Return from AP to DWP decision' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date of return of the Assessment Provider’s recommendation to DWP and the date of the DWP decision to either award or disallow the claim. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant during this phase.

9. The 'Registration to DWP decision (end to end)' clearance time is measured as the average time between the date of registration of the claim (or the date of transition if the claim moves from being a normal rules claim to being a special rules claim during the claimant journey) and the date of the DWP decision to either award or disallow the claim. It does not include claims that were withdrawn by the claimant or claims that were disallowed by DWP pre-referral to the Assessment Providers (e.g. for failure to meet basic eligibility criteria).

10. Note: the individual parts of the claimant journey average times may not sum to the end to end claimant journey average times. This is because each measure is based on the median clearance time of cases cleared at that stage, while the end to end measure is based on the median clearance time for all cleared cases. As the size and distributions of clearance times for the individual stages will vary, the sum of the individual medians will not sum to the end to end median.

11. '-' Fewer than 50 claims in this category.

12. Great Britain only.