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Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018

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Obtaining information to make determination

54Obligation to provide information on request

(1)When—

(a)the Scottish Ministers are determining an individual’s entitlement to assistance (whether under section 37 or 43), and

(b)they require further information in order to satisfy themselves about any matter material to the making of the determination,

they may request that the individual provide them with the information within such period as they specify.

(2)If the individual fails to provide the requested information by the end of the specified period the Scottish Ministers may, without further consideration, proceed to make the determination on the basis that the eligibility rules prescribed in the applicable regulations are not satisfied in the individual’s case (see section 50).

(3)For the avoidance of doubt, the information which the Scottish Ministers may request an individual to provide under subsection (1) includes the results of an assessment, including one which the individual has not undergone at the time the request is made.

55Requirement to justify assessment requests

(1)This section applies to a request for information from an individual under section 54(1) if fulfilling the request would require the individual to undergo an assessment.

(2)When making the request, the Scottish Ministers must inform the individual why they consider requiring the individual to undergo an assessment to be the only practicable way to obtain the information.

(3)If the individual would have to undergo a face-to-face assessment in order to fulfil the request, when making the request the Scottish Ministers must also inform the individual what consideration they have given to—

(a)any preference the individual has expressed to them concerning where and how assessments are carried out,

(b)whether the assessment could be carried out another way,

(c)what distance (if any) they expect the individual will have to travel in order to attend the assessment,

(d)the extent to which travelling to attend the assessment may—

(i)cause the individual distress, or

(ii)adversely affect the individual’s health.

(4)In subsection (3), “face-to-face assessment” means an assessment involving—

(a)the individual, and

(b)the assessor,

being physically in the same place at the same time.

56Duty to notify change of circumstances

(1)The Scottish Ministers may place a duty to notify them about a change in circumstances on a person to whom subsection (3), (4) or (5) applies.

(2)The Scottish Ministers place a duty under subsection (1) on a person by informing the person—

(a)of the changes in circumstances which the person has a duty to notify them about,

(b)of the way in which the person is to notify them, and

(c)that failing to notify them about a change in any of those circumstances in that way may be an offence under section 72.

(3)This subsection applies to an individual who is to be given assistance under section 24 under a determination made on the basis that the individual has ongoing entitlement to the type of assistance in question.

(4)This subsection applies to a person acting on behalf of an individual to whom subsection (3) applies in relation to any application for the assistance or the determination of the individual’s entitlement.

(5)This subsection applies to a person to whom payments are to be made under section 24 by way of assistance to another person under a determination made on the basis that that other person has ongoing entitlement to the type of assistance in question.

57Lifting of duty to notify change of circumstances

(1)A duty to notify the Scottish Ministers about a change of circumstances placed on a person under section 56 ceases to apply when—

(a)it is lifted under subsection (2), or

(b)it stops being the case that a change in any of the circumstances to which the duty relates can affect someone’s entitlement to be given assistance under section 24.

(2)The Scottish Ministers may lift a duty placed on a person under section 56 by informing the person that the duty is lifted.

(3)Under subsection (2), the Scottish Ministers may lift a duty as it relates to some or all of the changes in circumstances which the person has a duty to notify them about.

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