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Welfare Reform Act 2009

Section 32: Contracting out functions under Jobseeker’s Act 1995

172.This section provides a general provision to allow the contracting out of certain functions of the Secretary of State under the Jobseekers Act 1995.

173.Subsection (2) of section 32 inserts new section 20E before section 21 of the 1995 Act. This provides for particular functions of the Secretary of State and the functions of the officers of the Secretary of State to be carried out by authorised persons.

174.Subsection (3) provides for regulations to enable the relevant functions to be contracted out and subsections (5) and (6) provide for those regulations to include the extent to which the contracting out arrangements are to apply.

175.Some types of decisions, for example failure to comply with requirements, good cause for failure, and any reductions in jobseeker’s allowance are excluded and cannot be contracted out. Under these provisions any authorisation to a contractor may specify the duration for which the authorisation applies. The section also makes provision for the revocation of an authorisation and deals with the limits of any liabilities arising out of functions carried out by an authorised person.

176.Subsection (3) substitutes references to ‘employment officers’ with ‘officer of the Secretary of State’ in other parts of the 1995 Act so that it is aligned with the new terminology. Subsections (4) and (5) include further consequential changes.

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