Parliamentary Committees and Public Enquiries
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Universal Credit and childcare costs: Work and Pensions Committee publishes Government Response to Report

The Government Response to the Work and Pensions Committee Report on Universal Credit and childcare costs has been published.  

The childcare cap on those qualifying for Universal Credit is set to be uplifted in the summer after the Committee helped draw attention in its Report to the fact that it had not increased since 2016, despite rising inflation.  

The maximum amount qualifying claimants could get had been stagnant at £646.35 for one child and £1,108.04 for two. They can soon expect to receive £950.92 and £1,630.15 respectively, and to enable upfront payments. This had been an issue as many claimants wishing to enter work faced the prospect of racking up significant debt before their first pay cheque.

Chair's comment

Reacting to the response Committee Chair, Sir Stephen Timms said:

“Important victories have been scored in the increase to the childcare cap for Universal Credit claimants and upfront payments for childcare that will liberate parents to be supported to take up work.”

“Although we welcome moves to give people more control over their lives, we still think that more can be done to ensure that parents claiming Universal Credit are made fully aware of the childcare options open to them. Work Coaches should be properly trained to provide this information effectively.”

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