New benefit system to offer short-term assistance



Payment introduced to protect people when challenging benefit decisions.

Those contesting disability benefit decisions will be able to apply for a new short-term assistance payment under Scotland’s new social security system.

Short-term assistance means that people will continue to receive the amount of money they received before the decision to reduce or stop their payment.

To ensure people are not turned away to request an appeal or review, they will not have to reimburse short-term assistance if the review or appeal confirms the decision to reduce or stop their payment. social security.

This is a first for benefit payment in the UK and will be introduced alongside Child Disability Payment, the Scottish government’s replacement for living allowance for disabled children.

Social Security Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville said:

“People’s lives are complex and it is difficult to make benefit decisions that take into account a variety of unique circumstances. Social Security Scotland will gather as much information as possible, working with the applicant, the wider public sector and health and social service professionals to make the right decision the first time. However, we know we won’t always get there and where we don’t we want people to feel able to challenge us to watch again.

“This is why we are introducing Short Term Assistance. We know it can be difficult for people who depend on disability assistance when their payment has been reduced or stopped. The decision to request a review or appeal can be intimidating. This new payment will give people the confidence to ask us to watch again and appeal if they feel the need to, making sure they get everything they are entitled to while working through this process. .

“We hope to dramatically reduce the need for people to go through the review and appeal process under our new system getting the right decisions the first time.” Where we are not doing it right, we will give the people who rely on this service the opportunity to right that wrong, without being penalized. ”


  • Further details on how our review and appeal process will work are contained in a series of documents that outline the future of disability benefits in Scotland. These detail what people should expect from the request to the calls.
  • as the pandemic continues to impact our operations and delivery partners – including health and social care and the Department of Work and Pensions – we are doing what we can to move the policy work forward, design and development. We are still working on what the impacts of COVID-19 mean on our delivery schedule and are having conversations with partners to establish what we can introduce and when.


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