The Social Security (Work-focused Interviews for Lone Parents and Partners) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2011

Document Number:2011 No. 368
Coming into force:Coming into force on the 19/10/2011
 
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Statutory Rules of Northern Ireland

Social Security

Made

19 th October 2011

Coming into operation

31 st October 2011

The Department for Social Development makes the following Regulations in exercise of the powers conferred by sections 2 A(1) , (2 B) , (3)(b) and (e) , (5) , (6) and (8) , 2 AA(1) and (6) , 165(1) , (4)(a) , (5) and (6) of the Social Security Administration (Northern Ireland) Act 1992(1) , and now vested in it(2) and sections 12(1) , 13(1) , 24(3 B) and 25(2) of the Welfare Reform Act (Northern Ireland) 2007(3).

Citation, commencement and interpretation

  1. —(1) These Regulations may be cited as the Social Security (Work-focused Interviews for Lone Parents and Partners) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2011 and shall come into operation on 31 st October 2011.

    (2) The Interpretation Act (Northern Ireland) 1954(4) shall apply to these Regulations as it applies to an Act of the Assembly.

    Amendment of the Social Security (Work-focused Interviews for Lone Parents) Regulations

  2. —(1) The Social Security (Work-focused Interviews for Lone Parents) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2001(5) are amended in accordance with paragraphs (2) to (10).

    (2) In regulation 1 (citation, commencement and interpretation)—

    (a) in paragraph (2) after the definition of “pensionable age”(6) insert—

    ““relevant interview” means an interview under these Regulations in relation to the lone parent’s current award of income support.”; and

    (b) after paragraph (3) add—

    “(4) For the purposes of section 2 A(2 A)(b) of the Social Security Administration (Northern Ireland) Act 1992(7) and these Regulations, a lone parent is to be treated as responsible for, and a member of the same household as, a child under the age of one only where the lone parent is treated as being responsible for and a member of the same household as such a child under regulations 15 and 16 of the Income Support (General) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1987(8).”.

    (3) For regulation 2(9) (general requirement for lone parents claiming or entitled to income support to take part in an interview) substitute—

    “Requirement for certain lone parents entitled to income support to take part in an interview

  3. —(1) Subject to this regulation and regulations 2 ZA and 4 to 6 , a lone parent who falls within paragraph 1 (lone parents) of Schedule 1 B (prescribed categories of person) to the Income Support (General) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1987 and paragraph (2) or (3) is required to take part in an interview.

    (2) A lone parent falls within this paragraph if the lone parent is entitled to income support and has not taken part or been required to take part in a relevant interview.

    (3) A lone parent falls within this paragraph if the lone parent has—

    (a) taken part;

    (b) failed to take part; or

    (c) been treated as having taken part,

    in a relevant interview.

    (4) Where a lone parent falls within paragraph (3) , the requirement to take part in an interview arises every 6 months after the date on which the lone parent—

    (a) last took part;

    (b) last failed to take part; or

    (c) was last treated as having taken part,

    in a relevant interview.

    (5) Where a determination has been made in relation to a lone parent under regulation 6(1) (waiver) the lone parent is to be treated for the purposes of paragraph (2) of this regulation as if he has not taken part or been required to take part in a relevant interview.”.

    (4) In regulation 2 ZA(10) (requirement for certain lone parents to take part in an interview)—

    (a) in paragraph (2) for “an interview” in the second place where it occurs substitute “a relevant interview”; and

    (b) in paragraph (3)(a) and (b) for “an interview” substitute “a relevant interview”.

    (5) After regulation 2 ZA—

    (a) insert—

    “General requirement for lone parents entitled to income support to take part in an interview

    2 ZB.—(1) Subject to regulations 4 to 6 , this regulation applies to a lone parent who does not fall within paragraph 1 (lone parents) of Schedule 1 B (prescribed categories of person) to the Income Support (General) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1987 and is entitled to income support.

    (2) A lone parent to whom this regulation applies is required to take part in an interview—

    (a) where paragraph (3) applies; or

    (b) where paragraph (4) and either paragraph (5) or (6) applies.

    (3) This paragraph applies to a lone parent who has not taken part or been required to take part in a relevant interview.

    (4) This paragraph applies to a lone parent who has taken part in a relevant interview or who would have taken part in such an interview but for—

    (a) the requirement being deferred in accordance with regulation 5 , or

    (b) the requirement being waived in accordance with regulation 6.

    (5) This paragraph applies to a lone parent when any of the following circumstances arise—

    (a) the lone parent’s entitlement to carer’s allowance ceases whilst entitlement to income support continues;

    (b) the lone parent becomes engaged or ceases to be engaged in part-time work;

    (c) the lone parent has been undergoing education or training arranged by an officer and that education or training comes to an end; or

    (d) the lone parent attains the age of 18 and has not previously taken part in a relevant interview.

    (6) This paragraph applies where a lone parent has not been required to take part in a relevant interview for at least 36 months.”.

    (6) Omit regulation 2 A(11) (requirement for specified lone parents to take part in an interview).

    (7) In regulation 4(12) (circumstances where requirement to take part in an interview does not apply)—

    (a) in paragraph (1) for “Regulation 2” substitute “Regulations 2 and 2 ZB”;

    (b) after paragraph (1) insert—

    “(1 A) Regulation 2 shall not apply to a lone parent who is treated as responsible for, and a member of the same household as, a child who is under the age of one.”; and

    (c) in paragraph (2) for “2 A” substitute “2 ZB”.

    (8) In regulations 5(2)(13) (deferment of requirement to take part in an interview) and 6(2)(a)(14) (waiver) for “2 , 2 ZA and 2 A” substitute “2 , 2 ZA and 2 ZB”.

    (9) In regulation 7(15) (consequence of failure to take part in a work-focused interview)—

    (a) in paragraph (1) for “the consequences specified in paragraphs (3) and (4) ensue” substitute “the consequence specified in paragraph (3) ensues”;

    (b) for paragraph (3) substitute—

    “(3) The income support of a lone parent to whom paragraph (1) applies shall be reduced in accordance with regulation 8.”; and

    (c) omit paragraphs (4) and (6).

    (10) In regulation 8(3)(16) (reduction of income support)—

    (a) at the end of sub-paragraph (b) omit “and”; and

    (b) at the end of sub-paragraph (c) insert—

    “; and

    (d) the first day of the benefit week in which regulation 4(1 A) first applies to that person.”.

    Amendment of the Social Security (Work-focused Interviews) Regulations

  4. —(1) The Social Security (Work-focused Interviews) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2003(17) are amended in accordance with paragraphs (2) to (10).

    (2) In regulation 1 (citation, commencement and interpretation)—

    (a) in paragraph (3) after the definition of “relevant benefit” (18) insert—

    ““relevant interview” means an interview under these Regulations in relation to the claimant’s current award of a specified benefit;”; and

    (b) after paragraph (4) insert—

    “(4 A) For the purposes of section 2 A(2 A)(b) of the Social Security Administration (Northern Ireland) Act 1992(19) and these Regulations, a lone parent is to be treated as responsible for, and a member of the same household as, a child under the age of one only where the lone parent would be treated as being responsible for, and a member of the same household as, such a child under regulations 15 and 16 of the Income Support (General) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1987 , if references in those Regulations to income support were to a specified benefit.”.

    (3) In regulation...

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