1. The Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018 (the 2018 Act) sets out the broad framework for the delivery of social security in Scotland. Child Disability Payment was the first of three types of disability assistance to be introduced by the Scottish Government and launched nationally on 22 November 2021. It is available to children and young people from the ages of 3 months to 18 years old who have care and/or mobility needs as a result of a disability.
2. Adult Disability Payment was also introduced by the Scottish Government on 29 August 2022. This form of assistance provides disabled individuals with support for extra costs incurred as a result of disability. Both Child Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment have been co-designed with stakeholders and disabled people to ensure that the values of dignity, fairness and respect are embedded throughout.
3. In addition to supporting new applications, Scottish Ministers have made provision for the transfer of responsibility for delivering disability benefits for individuals who receive Personal Independence Payment and Disability Living Allowance for Children from the Department for Work and Pensions to Social Security Scotland. They are also responsible for changing the disability benefits for these individuals from Personal Independence to Adult Disability Payment and Disability Living Allowance for Children to Child Disability Payment. We refer to this process as “case transfer”.
4. The Disability Assistance (Miscellaneous Amendment) (Scotland) Regulations 2023 make amendments to the following sets of principal regulations for Child Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment: the Disability Assistance for Children and Young People (Scotland) Regulations 2021; the Disability Assistance for Working Age People (Scotland) Regulations 2022; and the Disability Assistance for Working Age People (Transitional Provisions and Miscellaneous Amendment) (Scotland) Regulations 2022. These changes to the principal regulations are intended to smooth the transition for individuals moving between these benefits. In addition they include some minor technical amendments. They also make a small adjustment to the Social Security (Invalid Care Allowance) Regulations 1976 to clarify eligibility criteria for Carer’s Allowance.
5. These changes build on the 2018 Act's framework of a system that is underpinned by dignity, respect and a human rights based approach to delivering social security for the people of Scotland. This impact assessment is one of a package to accompany the regulations. The others are: Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA), Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment (BRIA); Island Community Impact Assessment (ICIA) and the Fairer Scotland Duty Assessment.
6. Amending the principal regulations ensures that Child Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment entitlement is aligned to our policy intent, which is to help improve outcomes for disabled people, by providing financial assistance to help meet the additional costs associated with care and mobility needs as a result of being disabled. To achieve this we are doing the following:
Changes to the Child Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment Regulations which relate to the Child Disability Payment to Adult Disability Payment journey
7. The Scottish Government recognises the vital importance of supporting young people who are transitioning between different forms of social security assistance. We have listened to disabled people and people with long-term health conditions with experience of the social security system who told us that transitioning between child and adult services can be challenging.
8. We have already taken a number of actions to ensure that this process is less burdensome and more seamless than under the UK system, such as extending eligibility to 18 for those individuals in receipt of Child Disability Payment before the age of 16 to ensure continuity for young people at what we have been told is a difficult transition period for them. We have also provided individuals with the choice to make an application in many different ways including by post, online, by phone and with face-to-face support from our Local Delivery team.
9. We consider that the amendments we are making to the principal regulations for Child Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment will have a positive impact on individuals with protected characteristics as they intend to smooth the journey of those individuals transitioning from Child Disability Payment to Adult Disability Payment.
10. One way we are doing this is by amending the Adult Disability Payment Regulations to enable the payment cycles of people moving from Child Disability Payment to Adult Disability Payment to be maintained. This will ensure that young people who are transitioning from Child Disability Payment to Adult Disability Payment will receive their Adult Disability Payment on the same date that their Child Disability Payment was previously paid.
11. The move to align the payment cycles of people moving from Child Disability Payment to Adult Disability Payment will offer advantages for smooth processing. It will avoid the need for Child Disability Payment to end with a smaller payment covering part of a payment cycle, and therefore offers an administrative advantage.
At the moment, this group of young people are entitled to Adult Disability Payment from the date that a determination of entitlement for Adult Disability Payment is made, meaning that they receive their Adult Disability Payment later than those who were not in receipt of Child Disability Payment before becoming entitled to Adult Disability Payment. We are altering the start date of entitlement for Adult Disability Payment so that it begins on the day after the individual’s next Child Disability Payment payment cycle ends, following the Adult Disability Payment determination. Consequently, we are making a small amendment to the Child Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment Regulations. These amendments are to bring entitlement to Child Disability Payment to an end on the day of their next payment of Child Disability Payment, after a determination of entitlement to Adult Disability Payment has been made, and for entitlement to Adult Disability Payment to begin the day after that Child Disability Payment payment. Terminally ill clients moving from Child Disability Payment to Adult Disability Payment will similarly have their weekly in advance payment cycles maintained.
This change to preserve payment dates will benefit disabled young people moving from Child Disability Payment to Adult Disability Payment as it will provide them with financial continuity, reduce the risk of gaps in payment or overpayments and ease their transition from one form of assistance to another.
There are a small and finite number of non-terminally ill clients who also receive their payments weekly in advance as Social Security Scotland have honoured their payment cycle when their award was transferred from the Department for Work and Pensions. These clients will move from a weekly in advance to a four weekly in arrears payment cycle without any break in entitlement, to align with all other ADP applicants.
Importantly, this change does not negatively impact on the overall amount a person will receive.
12. There is provision in the Child Disability Payment Regulations to extend entitlement to Child Disability Payment to age 19 for those transferring from Disability Living Allowance to Child Disability Payment and those who have made a cross border move to Scotland from elsewhere in the United Kingdom. This was included to provide case transfer individuals, approaching 18 at the time of transfer, sufficient time to make their Adult Disability Payment application before their Child Disability Payment comes to an end. We are now at a place in the case transfer process where all young people over age 16 have now transferred to Child Disability Payment and are receiving the appropriate communications about making an application for Adult Disability Payment. This means it is now appropriate to narrow this provision. As such, we are amending this provision to apply only to those who turn 18 on or before 31st December 2023. This will ensure that this policy has the desired impact which is to protect those young people transitioning from Child Disability Payment to Adult Disability Payment as they approach 18. It also means that going forwards, regardless of whether an individual was originally in receipt of Disability Living Allowance or not, the same rules, regarding entitlement to Child Disability Payment over the age of 18, apply.
Other Amendments to the Child Disability Payment, Adult Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment Transitional Provisions Regulations
13. These amendments also include a set of minor technical amendments to the Child Disability Payment, Adult Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment transitional provisions Regulations. As such, we do not consider that they will have a significant impact on groups of people or communities but we have noted any potential impacts that have arisen as part of this impact assessment.
14. We are creating additional provisions within the Child Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment Regulations to make explicit that the care/daily living component of Adult Disability Payment/Child Disability Payment is restricted to individuals for whom the United Kingdom is the correct state for paying these components. We are aware that the residence criteria is more likely to impact individuals who regularly move between Scotland and the rest of the UK but there is insufficient data available to determine the level of this potential impact. We will continue to engage with relevant stakeholders and key organisations to monitor the impacts of this policy. These amendments were shared with SCoSS for scrutiny in February 2023.
15. The Child Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment Regulations are also being amended to make provision to state that, where a Determination Without Application is made on an individual’s entitlement to Adult Disability Payment when Scottish Ministers become aware that the individual has died, their entitlement will end on the day the person dies. This has always been the policy intention but this additional clarification ensures this is put beyond doubt. We are also clarifying Regulation 34(b) of the Child Disability Payment Regulations by inserting the word ‘Payment’ after ‘Child Disability’ as this is currently missing.
16. The Adult Disability Payment and Adult Disability Payment transitional provisions Regulations are being amended to clarify who changes are reported to before the transfer determination. Further amendments to the Adult Disability Payment transitional provisions Regulations clarify when and how changes that occur after the point of transfer should affect a person’s award.
17. These are technical amendments and we do not foresee any significant impact on groups or communities other than to clarify these provisions in terms of the Regulations.
Amendment to the Social Security (Invalid Care Allowance) Regulations 1976
18. We are making amendments to the Social Security (Invalid Care Allowance) Regulations 1976 to reflect the current legal position for carers to be able to receive Carer’s Allowance when abroad and caring for someone who is in receipt of Child Disability Payment or Adult Disability Payment. We consider that this will have a positive impact for disabled people given that it will ensure that carers abroad who are caring for a disabled person in receipt of Child Disability Payment or Adult Disability Payment receive the assistance they are entitled to.
19. We are amending the list at Regulation 9(2)(b) of the 1976 Regulations to include the care component of Child Disability Payment at the middle or highest rate and the daily living component of Adult Disability Payment at the standard or enhanced rate.
20. This will ensure carers providing care to someone in receipt of Child Disability Payment or Adult Disability Payment are treated consistently with those providing care to someone in receipt of Attendance Allowance, Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independence Payment.
24. This Child Rights and Wellbeing Assessment sets out the Scottish Government's analysis of the impact of the regulations on children and young people's wellbeing who may be affected by the implementation of these amendments.
25. The delivery of these amendments in Scotland is anticipated to have a broadly positive impact on children’s rights and welfare. We are delivering person centred disability assistance rooted in the values of providing disabled people and their families with dignity, fairness and respect.
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