DWP's proposed voucher system for PIP payments could transform welfare support

-Credit: (Image: Pete Stonier)
-Credit: (Image: Pete Stonier)


The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is mulling over a move from cash payments to vouchers in an effort to overhaul the current benefits system. Those receiving Personal Independence Payments (PIP) might see significant changes in how they receive financial support from the Government.

In a Green Paper, the DWP has detailed these possible shifts, aiming at the welfare support framework for some 2.6 million working-age adult recipients in England and Wales. The suggested changes include tweaks to PIP eligibility criteria, revamping the assessment process to more accurately reflect a claimant's health condition, and considering different methods to the usual monthly payment scheme.

According to the Liverpool Echo, the "Modernising support for independent living: the health and disability Green Paper" proposes a departure from the fixed monthly cash payment approach, exploring alternatives like vouchers, a receipts system, one-off grants, or direct procurement of goods or services through a catalogue.

Who will be eligible for PIP vouchers?

The entitlement to apply for PIP is expected to remain unchanged with the voucher system. A quick look at the current rules indicates that you are eligible for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) if all the following conditions are met:, reports Bristol Live.

Can PIP vouchers be claimed yet?

As it stands, there is no option to apply for DWP PIP vouchers as the voucher system is not currently in operation. PIP continues to be distributed through the standard cash payments.

PIP was launched in 2013 with the aim of providing non-means-tested cash payments to disabled individuals and those with health conditions, assisting them in leading independent lives. The purpose of PIP was to contribute towards additional costs arising from their disability and to be a more sustainable, dynamic benefit that would also pay greater attention to mental health than its predecessor, Disability Living Allowance (DLA).

The concept of PIP vouchers was suggested by the DWP in a 2017 Green Paper but was never put into action due to concerns raised by disability rights groups. It's important to note that any proposed changes could hinge on the results of the General Election on July 4.

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