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Universal Credit: Complaints

Question for Department for Work and Pensions

UIN 115726, tabled on 16 November 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what recent assessment she has made of trends in the time taken to process a universal credit complaint.

Answered on

19 November 2020

Complaints received about the Universal Credit are handled in line with the overall Departmental complaints process published on We aim to contact customers within 15 working days to clear the complaint or agree how to investigate it if it will take longer.

As part of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we had to make changes to our complaints model to allow staff to be deployed to support processing claims and payments. From 9 July 2020, DWP now triage complaints giving priority to vulnerable customers who may be at risk, and those with benefit payment issues.

We continue to look into all complaints as quickly as we can and, as part of the triage process used to determine lower priority, we write to those customers explaining there may be a delay in answering their complaint.

We plan to review the effectiveness of the approach we have taken throughout the pandemic as part of an ongoing review into complaints handling.

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