Lone Parents: Finance:Written question - 226593

Q
Asked by Bill Wiggin
(North Herefordshire)
Asked on: 27 February 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Lone Parents: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what plans her Department has to increase financial support for single-parent families.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 05 March 2019

Under Universal Credit, working families can claim back up to 85% of their registered childcare costs each month. This can be claimed up to a month before starting a job.

In the Autumn Budget 2017, the Department introduced a range of measures to support claimants and ensure no one has to experience hardship within the initial assessment period. These include making advances more generous, removing the 7 waiting days, providing an additional transitional payment of 2 weeks of Housing Benefit and changing how claimants in temporary accommodation receive support for their housing costs

We recently announced that parents may be eligible to receive a Flexible Support Fund Award or a budgeting advance to enable them to take up a job offer or increase their working hours.

We are also piloting a more flexible approach to claimants reporting childcare costs, which will allow people to be reimbursed for childcare even if they aren’t able to provide immediate evidence. Once the pilots have concluded, we will consider whether to roll out this approach further.

Additionally, there will be a £1000 increase in work allowances from April 2019, which will provide a £630 boost for households with children, and for people with disabilities.

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