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The Welfare Reform (Northern Ireland) Order 2015

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Regulations

Pilot schemes

47.—(1) Any power to make—

(a)regulations under this Part,

(b)regulations under the Administration Act relating to universal credit, or

(c)regulations under the Social Security (Northern Ireland) Order 1998 relating to universal credit,

may be exercised so as to make provision for piloting purposes.

(2) In paragraph (1), “piloting purposes”, in relation to any provision, means the purposes of testing—

(a)the extent to which the provision is likely to make universal credit simpler to understand or to administer,

(b)the extent to which the provision is likely to promote—

(i)people remaining in work, or

(ii)people obtaining or being able to obtain work (or more work or better-paid work), or

(c)the extent to which, and how, the provision is likely to affect the conduct of claimants or other people in any other way.

(3) Regulations made by virtue of this Article are in the remainder of this Article referred to as a “pilot scheme”.

(4) A pilot scheme may be limited in its application to—

(a)one or more areas;

(b)one or more classes of person;

(c)persons selected—

(i)by reference to prescribed criteria, or

(ii)on a sampling basis.

(5) A pilot scheme may not have effect for a period exceeding 3 years, but—

(a)the Department may by order provide that the pilot scheme is to continue to have effect after the time when it would otherwise expire for a period not exceeding 12 months (and may make more than one such order);

(b)a pilot scheme may be replaced by a further pilot scheme making the same or similar provision.

(6) A pilot scheme may include consequential or transitional provision in relation to its expiry.

Regulations

48.—(1) Where any power under this Part to make regulations is expressed to be exercisable for alternative purposes, it may be exercised in relation to the same case for all or any of those purposes.

(2) Any power under this Part to make regulations includes power—

(a)to make such incidental, supplementary, consequential or transitional provision or savings as appear to the Department to be expedient;

(b)to provide for a person to exercise a discretion in dealing with any matter.

(3) Each power conferred by this Part is without prejudice to the others.

(4) Where regulations under this Part provide for an amount, the amount may be zero.

(5) Where regulations under this Part provide for an amount for the purposes of an award (or a reduction from an award), the amount may be different in relation to different descriptions of person, and in particular may depend on—

(a)whether the person is a single person or a member of a couple;

(b)the age of the person.

(6) Regulations under Article 16(4) or 17(3) which provide for the determination or calculation of an amount may make different provision for different areas.

Assembly control

49.—(1) Subject to the following provisions of this Article, any regulations made under this Part are subject to negative resolution.

(2) Regulations made by virtue of Article 47 (pilot schemes), alone or with other regulations—

(a)must be laid before the Assembly after being made; and

(b)take effect on such date as may be specified in the regulations, but (without prejudice to the validity of anything done thereunder or to the making of new regulations) cease to have effect upon the expiration of a period of 6 months from that date unless at some time before the expiration of that period the regulations are approved by a resolution of the Assembly.

(3) This paragraph applies to any regulations under this Part which—

(a)but for paragraph (4), would be subject to negative resolution, and

(b)are contained in a statutory rule which includes any regulations subject to the confirmatory procedure.

(4) Any regulations to which paragraph (3) applies shall not be subject to negative resolution, but shall be subject to the confirmatory procedure.

(5) In this Article “the confirmatory procedure” means the procedure described in paragraph (2).

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