Webinar: The Art of Deduction, 8 July 2021
Issues and challenges in advising claimants on direct deductions from universal credit
The system providing for recovery of various debts owed to third parties or directly to the Department for Work and Pensions is a perennial source of problems for claimants.
Claimants are forced to survive for years with a large proportion of their standard allowance used to cover these debts and deducted at source.
The regulations that enable the system are often couched in discretionary terms which should allow for an individual’s circumstances to be taken into account in setting deduction rates but that is not how the system is operated by the DWP.
Additionally, the process of working out whether the sums deducted are properly owed, and/or asking for recovery to be suspended, or rates to be reduced is complex.
In this 3 hour seminar we will look at:
- An overview of how deductions work.
- Practical tips for, and experiences of, getting deductions paused or reduced.
- Legal challenges to the practice of the DWP in taking deductions - in particular, the approach to discretion and whether advance payments are recovered at unlawfully high rates.
Michael Spencer: Barrister at Doughty Street and former CPAG Solicitor who acted in R (oao Blundell & Ors) v SSWP  EWHC 608 (Admin) - the successful challenge to the DWP deductions policy for Court fines.
Owen Stevens: welfare rights adviser at CPAG, specialising in universal credit issues.
Carri Swan: welfare rights adviser at CPAG, working directly with claimants on universal credit.
Method of delivery and timings
This three-hour webinar will run from 1pm to 4pm.
It will be delivered live online, via Zoom, and there will be an opportunity for attendees to ask the speakers questions.
Participants will receive an email link, a few days before the webinar, to allow access to the event.
Ticket prices start from £49.50 for voluntary organisations and £69.50 for statutory/other organisations.