Welfare reform

Welfare Rights - Welfare Reform block

The Welfare Reform Act 2012 became law on 8 March 2012. The Act introduces a wide range of reforms to the benefits and tax credits system.

This page lists all our resources on welfare reform. See also our page on universal credit.

Key resources


  • Two child limit challenge

    Last updated: May 23, 2017
    test case

    CPAG is preparing to challenge the two child limit, introduced by the Welfare Reform and Work Act 2016. On 6 April 2017, new rules came into force limiting the child element of child tax credit (CTC) and universal credit (UC) awards to two children. In CTC, this limit only applies to a third or subsequent child born on or after 6 April 2017; in UC the limit applies from 6 April 2017 (irrespective of when the child was born) though transitional protection applies to third or subsequent children born before 6 April 2017. There are a limited number of exceptions to this 2 child limit meaning that it does not apply to a third or subsequent child in the following circumstances: multiple births, adoption from local authority care, kinship care and children likely to have been conceived as a result of rape or a coercive or controlling relationship.

  • Universal Credit Advances


    page

    The rules about advance payments of Universal Credit (UC) are similar to the rules about short-term benefit advances of other benefits.

  • Local welfare assistance schemes


    page

    Your local welfare assistance scheme (LWAS) can help you if you are in urgent need following an emergency or unforeseen event and have no other source of help. The schemes are run by local councils and they vary. You may be able to get vouchers to pay for food, fuel or clothing or bigger basic living items such as beds, cookers and fridges. You can’t usually get cash.

  • Welfare Reform and Work Bill 2015

    Issue 247 (August 2015)
    article

    The Welfare Reform and Work Bill was laid before parliament and given its first reading on 9 July 2015. The second reading took place on 21 July 2015 and CPAG will continue to lobby for amendments to the Bill as it progresses through parliament. Paul Treloar summarises the main points of the Bill.

  • Benefit cuts: who is hurting?

    Issue 242 (October 2014)
    article

    Paul Treloar, Advice and Rights Manager at CPAG, describes recent research on the impact of benefit cuts.

  • Welfare reform: what it means to families at risk of poverty


    factsheet

    The Coalition Government has targeted the social security budget with unprecedented cuts in expenditure totalling £22 billion a year by 2014-15.

    This factsheet is a summary of the reforms, and the impact on families.

  • Welfare reform in 2013

    Issue 233 (April 2013)
    article

    2013 is a landmark year in welfare reform. Simon Osborne outlines the main changes.

  • What is replacing the social fund?

    Issue 233 (April 2013)
    article

    David Simmons looks at alternative provision following the abolition of the discretionary social fund (SF) from 1 April 2013.

  • HB deductions for under-occupying social housing

    Issue 232 (February 2013)
    article

    David Simmons examines new rules which restrict the housing benefit (HB) entitlement of social housing tenants with excess bedrooms.

    Note: this article was edited on 21/03/2013 to correct an error- see note at end of article.

  • Taking candy from a baby

    Issue 231 (December 2012)
    article

    Mark Willis explains how the rules designed to restrict child benefit for ‘high earners’ are meant to work.