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Welfare Reform Act (Northern Ireland) 2007

Section 9: Limited capability for work-related activity

Section 9 refers to claimants whose physical or mental conditions are so severely disabling that it is unreasonable to require them to engage in work-related activity or to participate in work-focused interviews as a condition of receiving the full amount of employment and support allowance. A claimant of this description will have “limited capability for work-related activity”. A claimant who demonstrates limited capability for work-related activity will be a member of the “support group” (referred to in sections 11 and 12 and defined in section 24(4)). A claimant with limited capability for work-related activity will be entitled to receive a support component in addition to the basic allowance of employment and support allowance (see sections 2 and 4).

A claimant who is a member of the support group will not be subject to any requirements imposed by regulations under sections 11, 12 and 13 to attend work-focused health-related assessments, participate in work-focused interviews or undertake work-related activity.

Section 9 provides regulation making powers that are similar to the powers provided under section 8. Regulations will make provision about the assessment of a person’s capability for work-related activity and about how the assessment will be performed (including providing for a medical examination to be carried out if one is considered necessary). Regulations will also provide for a claimant to be treated as being capable of work-related activity if he fails, without good cause, to comply with requests for information or evidence related to his claim, or to provide it in the manner requested or if he refuses without good cause to attend for, or submit to, a medical examination where one is required.

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