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Coronavirus: What's Changed - Conditionality
Coronavirus - Conditionality
Rules from 1st July 2020 

All new UC / JSA  claimants need to agree a claimant commitment. This will - in the main - be arranged online or over the phone. As far as we are aware this can contain work related requirements.

Note that Employment Minister Mims Davies has confirmed in a parliamentary answer that claimant commitments must be reasonable and must acknowledge the reality of the claimant's local jobs market and personal circumstances.

However you may need to refer to the rules as they were prior to 1st July ie during the first lockdown period, to help anyone who had not been not treated correctly under these easements. For example they might need to appeal against a sanction.


Rules before 1st July 2020 - everything below refers to the 'old rules

The Social Security (Coronavirus) (Further Measures) Regulations 2020 took effect between 30th March and 30th June 2020. They stated that during this period the DWP:

  • Could not impose a work search requirement on any Universal Credit,  New-Style JSA or Old-Style JSA claimant.
  • Should have removed any existing work search requirement from 30th March 2020.
  • End any low level sanction period if the claimant made any contact with the DWP - see example below.
 
 

Example:

Aaron is claiming UC as a jobseeker. He failed to attend a work focused interview back in February - and so had a low level open-ended sanction imposed on him.
Normally this would only end when Aaron complied with the request ie booked another work focused interview, however as Aaron made a note on his UC journal on 3rd May, his work coach was able to stop his sanction from being open-ended.
His message did not have to be related to the requirement to attend a WFI, eg he might be telling his work coach that he is self-isolating, reporting another change in his circumstances or simply asking for the sanction to end.
If he did so, his work coach could have stopped the open-ended part of the sanction so that it ended after the additional fixed period of 7/14/28 days.

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