The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has a duty to protect public funds and an obligation to ensure that, in accordance with social security legislation, any overpayment of benefit resulting from claimant error or fraud is recovered.
I can confirm that there were 92,760 Universal Credit claimants who had a deduction from their Universal Credit as a recovery against a benefit overpayment within October 2018.
Housing costs are defined in two ways:
- Owner-occupier service charges and
- Rent, including service charges
The information on (a) is not readily available and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.
The latest available data is for eligible claims to UC Full Service that are due a payment in September 2018. Of these claims, 5% have a deduction from their standard allowance to repay rent arrears. This equates to 45,000 claims (rounded to the nearest 1,000).