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House of Lords Library

Welfare Reform and Work Bill (HL Bill 69 of 2015–16)

Published Tuesday, November 10, 2015

This Library Note provides background reading in advance of the second reading in the House of Lords of the Welfare Reform and Work Bill on 17 November 2015.

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The Welfare Reform and Work Bill contains a number of measures. The Bill would place a duty on the Government to report on its progress towards full employment, its apprenticeships target and the effect of certain support for troubled families. It would also make provision about ‘life chances’ for children; the benefit cap; social security and tax credits; loans for mortgage interest; and social housing rents.

The Bill was introduced in the House of Commons on 9 July 2015 and received its second reading on 20 July 2015. A Public Bill Committee took written evidence on the Bill, and examined it over eleven sittings from 10 September 2015 to 20 October 2015. The Bill passed through its remaining stages in the House of Commons on 27 October 2015. A number of government amendments were made to the Bill during its passage through the House of Commons. Divisions took place on a number of opposition amendments, but none of these were carried. Following its first reading on 28 October 2015, the Bill is scheduled to receive its second reading in the House of Lords on 17 November 2015.

The Library Note provides an overview of the Bill’s provisions; examines its background; summarises proceedings on the Bill in the House of Commons; and outlines selected reaction to the child poverty and ‘life chances’ measures in the Bill. It should be viewed as complementary to, and should be read in conjunction with, the Welfare Reform and Work Bill as introduced in the House of Lords and the Explanatory Notes published by the Department of Work and Pensions to accompany the Bill. The House of Commons Library Briefing on the Bill provides more detailed background to, and further comment on, individual provisions in the version of the Bill introduced in the House of Commons on 9 July 2015. A further House of Commons Library Briefing provides detailed information on the Bill’s committee stage in that House. The Government has published a number of impact assessments on the Bill, together with memoranda concerning delegated powers and human rights.

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House of Lords Library

The House of Lords Library delivers research and information services to Members and staff of the House in support of parliamentary business.