Draft Disability Assistance for Older People (Scotland) Regulations 2024: Draft Equality Impact Assessment

A draft Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA) considering the potential effects of the draft Disability Assistance for Older People (Scotland) Regulations 2024 on individuals with protected characteristics.

Executive Summary

The Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018 (the 2018 Act) sets out the broad framework for the delivery of the Scottish Government’s social security benefits.[1] On 1 April 2020, executive and legal competence for disability benefits, including Disability Living Allowance for Children, Personal Independence Payment and Attendance Allowance was transferred to Scottish Ministers.

The Scottish Government has now replaced Disability Living Allowance for Children with Child Disability Payment, and Personal Independence Payment with Adult Disability Payment. Attendance Allowance is currently being delivered by the Department for Work and Pensions on behalf of the Scottish Government under the terms of an Agency Agreement.

Under the 2018 Act, it is the Scottish Government’s intention to replace Attendance Allowance with Pension Age Disability Payment. This was formerly known as Disability Assistance for Older People. Pension Age Disability Payment will be delivered by Social Security Scotland on behalf of Scottish Ministers. People will be able to challenge a determination by requesting a re-determination, and subsequently they will be able to appeal to the Social Security Chamber of the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland.

The draft Disability Assistance for Older People (Scotland) Regulations 2024 set out the eligibility criteria and how Social Security Scotland will deliver Pension Age Disability Payment. Section 31 of the 2018 Act sets out the legal basis in which Scottish Ministers make regulations for the rules and structures of disability assistance. Therefore, the title of these regulations do not use the specific name of this benefit.

The regulations also make provision for the case transfer process for people in Scotland who currently receive Attendance Allowance. These provisions are not currently included within the full draft regulations, however they will be added in due course.

Based on information from the Department for Work and Pensions’ Stat-Xplore service, there were around 144,000 individuals in August 2022 with an entitlement to Attendance Allowance in Scotland whose awards would transfer to Pension Age Disability Payment.[2]

The public sector equality duty is a legislative requirement which states that the Scottish Government must assess the impact of applying a proposed new or revised policy or practice on groups with protected characteristics. Policies should reflect that different people have different needs. Equality legislation covers the protected characteristics of age, disability, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion and belief, sex, sexual orientation as well as marriage and civil partnership.

This Equality Impact Assessment has identified potential impacts on disabled people in Scotland who are over the State Pension age as a result of replacing Attendance Allowance with Pension Age Disability Payment.

It was found that, overall, the Scottish Government’s policy has a number of improvements on the existing process which would have a positive impact on people in Scotland with protected characteristics. Where areas of improvement have been identified, the Scottish Government has made changes to better meet the needs of people living in Scotland.


Email: Joseph.Scullion@gov.scot

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